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The Inevitability Of Impeachment
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 12:40 am    Post subject: The Inevitability Of Impeachment Reply with quote

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/the-inevitability-of-impeachment_us_588e8d52e4b0b065cbbcd09f

The Inevitability Of Impeachment
The Huffington Post

Trump has been trying to govern by impulse, on whim, for personal retribution, for profit, by decree ― as if he had been elected dictator. It doesn’t work, and the wheels are coming off the bus. After a week!

Impeachment is gaining ground because it is the only way to get him out, and because Republicans are already deserting this president in droves, and because the man is psychiatrically incapable of checking whether something is legal before he does it.

Impeachment is gaining ground because it’s so horribly clear that Trump is unfit for office. The grownups around Trump, even the most slavishly loyal ones, spend half their time trying to rein him in, but it can’t be done.

They spend the other half fielding frantic calls from Republican chieftains, business elites and foreign leaders. Trump did what? Poor Reince Priebus has finally attained the pinnacle of power, and it can’t be fun.

It is one thing to live in your own reality when you are a candidate and it’s just words. You can fool enough of the people enough of the time maybe even to get elected. But when you try to govern that way, there is a reality to reality—and reality pushes back.

One by one, Trump has decreed impulsive orders, un-vetted by legal, policy, or political staff, much less by serious planning. Almost immediately he is forced to walk them back by a combination of political and legal pressure—and by reality.

Unlike in the various dictatorships Trump admires, the complex skein of constitutional legal and political checks on tyranny in the United States are holding—just barely at times, but they are holding. And the more reckless Trump’s behavior, the stronger become the checks.

Only with his lunatic effort to selectively ban refugees (but not from terrorist-sending countries like Saudi Arabia and Egypt where Trump has business interests) has Trump discovered that the American system has courts. It has courts. Imagine that..

The more unhinged he becomes, the less will conservative judges be the toadies to ordinary Republican policies that they too often have been. Anybody want to wager that the Supreme Court will be Trump’s whore?

In the past week, Republicans from Mitch McConnell on down have tripped over each other rejecting his view of Putin. They have ridiculed his screwball claim of massive voter fraud.

They are running for cover on how to kill ObamaCare without killing patients or Republican re-election hopes. This is actually complicated, and nuance is not Trump’s strong suit. Rep Tom McClintock of California spoke for many when he warned:

“We’d better be sure that we’re prepared to live with the market we’ve created” with repeal, said Rep. Tom McClintock. (R-Calif.)

“That’s going to be called Trumpcare. Republicans will own that lock, stock and barrel, and we’ll be judged in the election less than two years away.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham, mocking Trump’s own nutty tweeting habits, sent out a tweet calling a trade war with Mexico “mucho sad.”

Trump’s own senior staff has had to pull him back from his ludicrous crusade against Mexico and Mexicans, where Trump forces the Mexican president to cancel an official visit one day, and spends an hour on the phone kissing up the next day.

Trump proposed to reinstate torture, but key Republican leaders killed that idea. Sen. John Thune (S.D.), the Senate’s third ranking Republican said Wednesday that the ban on torture was settled law and the Republicans in Congress would oppose any reinstatement. Trump’s own defense secretary holds the same view. After blustering out his new torture policy, Trump meekly agreed to defer to his defense advisers.

All this in just a week! Now capped by federal judges starting to rein him in.

Two weeks ago, in this space, just based on what we witnessed during the transition, I wrote a piece calling for a citizens impeachment panel, as a shadow House Judiciary Committee, to assemble a dossier for a Trump impeachment, and a citizens’ campaign to create a public impeachment movement.

In the two weeks since then, Free Speech for People has launched a citizens’ campaign to impeach Trump. About 400,000 people have already signed the impeachment petition.

The bipartisan group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, (CREW) has been conducting a detailed investigation. Senior legal scholars associated with CREW have filed a detailed legal brief in their lawsuit, documenting the several ways Trump is in violation of the Emoluments Clause, which prohibits a president from profiting from the actions of foreign governments.

There are already plenty of other grounds for impeachment, including Trump’s putting his own business interests ahead of the country’s and his weird and opportunistic alliance with Vladimir Putin bordering on treason. A lesser-known law that goes beyond the Emoluments Clause is the STOCK Act of 2012, which explicitly prohibits the president and other officials from profiting from non-public knowledge.

Impeachment, of course, is a political as well as a legal process. The Founders designed it that way deliberately. But after just a week in office, not only has Trump been deserting the Constitution; his partisan allies are deserting him.

Despite his creepy weirdness, Republicans at first thought they could use Trump for Republican ends. But from his embrace of Putin to his sponsorship of a general trade war, this is no Republican. One can only imagine the alarm and horror being expressed by Republicans privately.

In 1984, the psychiatrist Otto Kernberg described a sickness known as Malignant Narcissism. Unlike ordinary narcissism, malignant narcissism was a severe pathology.

It was characterized by an absence of conscience, a pathological grandiosity and quest for power, and a sadistic joy in cruelty.

Given the sheer danger to the Republic as well as to the Republicans, Trump’s impeachment will happen. The only question is how grave a catastrophe America faces first.
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Angelina



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 12:49 am    Post subject: The Inevitability Of Impeachment Reply with quote

So, XP... How long do you think it will take for the Republicans to really wake up? Right now we have isolated voices (McCain, Graham) in the wilderness (so to speak) - How long before the whole Congress follows the country and does something? Before more harm is done?

If we've reached this point after just over a week, imagine what it will be in a month, in a year, let alone four years? How long will they let this total (and ignorant) madman run amok?
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:34 am    Post subject: TV viewers wonder... Reply with quote

Caller Demands to Know Whether Donald Trump Will Be Impeached

--Caller wonders if Donald Trump has committed any impeachable offenses yet

https://youtu.be/8Gy-XOv6uLc


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2017 2:08 am    Post subject: A Dangerously Isolated President Reply with quote

http://www.newyorker.com/news/benjamin-wallace-wells/a-dangerously-isolated-president

A Dangerously Isolated President
By Benjamin Wallace-Wells

The Presidential order that Donald Trump signed on Friday barring all refugees and citizens from seven Muslim countries from travel to the United States was reviewed by virtually no one. The State Department did not help craft it, nor the Defense Department, nor Justice. Trump’s Secretary of Homeland Security, John Kelly, “saw the final details shortly before the order was finalized,” CNN reported. Early Saturday morning, there were reports that two Iraqi refugees had been detained upon their arrival at John F. Kennedy Airport. When a lawyer for the men asked an official to whom he needed to speak to fix the situation, the official said, “Ask Mr. Trump.” This sounded like a sign of straight goonery and incipient authoritarianism; maybe it was. But it also may have been the only reasonable answer. Few people understood what was going on.

The order claims to protect Americans from “foreign terrorist entry,” but that was no reason for it. A wealth of data shows that immigrants from those countries have not been responsible for fatal terrorist attacks in the United States. At first, the acting spokesperson of the Department of Homeland Security said that the order would not apply to permanent residents of the United States. This seemed to be a sensible assumption; as fevered as the talk over immigration has been on the right, few have threatened a mass revocation of the rights of green-card holders. But a senior White House official later said that green-card holders would have to undergo screenings. Morally outrageous scenes followed. Homeland Security officials said that at least a hundred people had been prevented from entering the country, and many more had been stopped from boarding planes to the U.S. Those detained at Dulles International Airport, before federal judges issued stays of the order, included an Iranian couple in their eighties, both with green cards. One was legally blind, and the other had recently had a stroke; their granddaughter said that officials at the airport “weren’t treating them very well.” At O’Hare, a couple with an eighteen-month-old was reportedly detained, after a trip abroad to introduce the baby to relatives.

On Saturday, the President announced three more executive actions, one of which changed the composition of his National Security Council. Trump reserved one seat on the Council for his chief strategist, Steve Bannon, the former chairman of the right-wing Web site Breitbart News, who has no experience in foreign relations. Trump also limited the roles of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the director of National Intelligence, with a memo that said they will only attend meetings when “issues pertaining to their responsibilities and expertise are to be discussed.” The erasure of the line between national security and Bannon’s politics, which have included an embrace of white nationalism, was deeply troubling. But the exclusion of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the director of National Intelligence was more surprising. The President can pick anyone he wants for those positions. Trump has nominated the former Indiana senator Dan Coats to be the director of National Intelligence; the term of the current chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford, will expire this year. The President seems to be deliberately tightening the circle around him.

In the first week of the Trump Presidency, influence has run through a very select group of advisers—maybe as many as half a dozen, maybe as few as two. The President’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and Bannon have consolidated their influence. Kushner, who has spent his brief career running his father’s real-estate empire, reportedly has been told to lead negotiations with Mexico. Kushner was also involved in a discussion with British officials, and denounced the United Kingdom’s support of a United Nations resolution opposing Israeli settlements. According to the Washington Post, some former campaign aides “have been alarmed by Kushner’s efforts to elbow aside anyone he perceives as a possible threat to his role as Trump’s chief consigliere.” But Bannon’s portfolio may be even broader. His hand was apparent in the President’s dark Inauguration speech, in his economic nationalism, and in his early, aggressive stances against Mexico and refugees.

The President’s isolation runs deeper than that. As the confusion around the immigration ban made clear, the vast government he oversees has little input on his actions. In an interview this week, Trump said that he reads the Times, the New York Post, and the Washington Post each day, but he seems to scan them as an actor does, for reviews of his own performance. His campaign made clear that he was not interested in the findings of scientists, social scientists, or the American government. Trump’s transition has alienated him from the American public. Gallup found on Friday that fifty per cent of Americans disapproved of Trump’s performance, the highest disapproval rating on record for any American President this early in his term.

In normal times, an Administration this isolated and divorced from public opinion would seem to be fatally weak. The argument made by the President’s first week is that these conditions, combined with the general assent of a Republican-controlled Congress, might in fact create the opposite situation, freeing him to do whatever he wants.

At times this past week, the theatre of the Administration has seemed to be as large as the Oval Office; at others, it has seemed smaller still, about the size of the President’s own head. “If Chicago doesn’t fix the horrible ‘carnage’ going on . . . I will send in the Feds!” Trump tweeted on Tuesday evening. In fact, a large team from the Department of Justice had recently been in Chicago, where it delivered an indictment of the excesses of the Chicago Police Department, connecting them to the collapse of trust between residents and officers, which in turn enabled a rise in crime.

But that report hadn’t prompted the President’s tweet. What had? It turned out that Bill O’Reilly’s Fox News show had just aired a segment on crime in Chicago. The President had seen something that moved him on a news program, and then he had reacted. The tweet was one of the least significant Presidential gestures of the past week. But it served as prelude for some of the darker ones. At times, the only figure in the room may be Trump himself, with the blue glow of his television screen.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 6:14 pm    Post subject: "Resistance" - what's in a name? Reply with quote

What’s in a Name for Trump Opposition? Everything.
A name has to be optimistic, welcoming, strong. Ideally, it would also resonate with something in American history.
Michael Tomasky
02.03.17 12:00 AM ET

The anti-Trump movement in this country is off to a pretty great start. The biggest single day of demonstrations in the history of the country was on the man’s first full day in office. They were held all over the country, in red-state cities like Boise and Missoula and Charleston, West Virginia, as well as around the world. Then the beautiful spontaneous uprisings at airports and, again, in major cities the following week.

That’s all terrific. The big question on a lot of people’s minds, though, is how to turn these demonstrations into a movement. That’s the harder part. Enthusiasm for marches peters out, eventually. If we look to history, even just recent history, we must admit that the Tea Party movement did the converting part really well. Literally within weeks of the famous Santelli rant, there were hundreds of local Tea Party groups up and running around the country, having meetings in which they educated members on how to pressure their state legislators and members of Congress.

The Tea Party movement wasn’t my cup of, uh, you know, but I admit that it had a lot of things going for it. It had passion. It had people with time on their hands—an underestimated but important factor in the building of any movement. It had a good organizing principle—pressure Republicans to move to the right and stand up for what Tea Partiers understood to be their principles. All things the new anti-Trump movement ought to try to emulate in some way.

But the Tea Party movement had one more thing that was of vital importance: a kick-ass name. This movement needs one, too.

Too often in my experience on the left, people think names don’t matter as much as ideas and plans of action. Names, they think, are just public relations and packaging, which by definition makes them both superficial and dishonest. If you think this, you could not be more wrong. Names matter. They communicate intention and vision and ambition. And what I understand to be the leading contender for the name of this movement is terrible on every count.

We’ll get back to that. But first: I don’t remember out of which mouth I first heard the words “Tea Party movement,” but I do remember that as soon as I heard those words I thought: uh-oh. That is one killer name. What American doesn’t like the Boston Tea Party? Its coding couldn’t be clearer: We are the true patriots, rising up against tyranny. The name itself makes a person want to belong, pick up the phone, start emailing. Loads of people are going to want to join this.

[...]

While the name Tea Party made people want to join, I think the name Resistance will prove off-putting to all but already highly politicized people. Trump is not popular. There are millions of people out there who are not highly politicized in their lives but are recruitable to this movement. Speak to them.

Do I have great ideas? No, I admit I don’t. But a name has to be optimistic, welcoming, strong, and in an ideal world it may resonate with something in American history. The Real Majority. The Patriotic Majority. The 2.8 Million. Patrick Henry clubs. Tom Paine clubs. Common Sense clubs. Gettysburg clubs—that’d depress membership in the South, but that will be low anyway. Happy Days societies, to echo FDR’s famous campaign slogan. We Shall Overcome leagues.

I don’t know. But not The Resistance. When it comes to American democratic norms, it’s Trump who’s the resistor. That has to be the point of this movement, and it has to be the message of its name as well.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2017/02/03/what-s-in-a-name-for-trump-opposition-everything.html?via=newsletter&source=DDAfternoon
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 3:43 am    Post subject: Trump Impeachment May Now Be Legally Justified Reply with quote

Trump Impeachment May Now Be Legally Justified
Democratic Representative Joaquin Castro (D-TX) is asking Congress to investigate "whether President Trump intentionally exceeded his constitutional authority" by instituting a travel and refugee ban on seven Muslim-majority countries

https://youtu.be/SgBxcDZ9d8Y


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:11 am    Post subject: Impeachment Reply with quote

First, an off-topic remark: I thought that after the election, with Trump settling in as president, things would quiet down and this site wouldn't be so active. In fact, between Trump and the French presidential election, I think we're even busier now than we were before!!! I owe Trump my thanks!!!

That was a very interesting video clip, in the points it made - the fact that a Republican-majority House, and a conservative Supreme Court Chief Justice may not be too keen in impeaching Trump - and the other fact that without Trump, we'd find ourselves with Mike Pence, who may be worse.

I'm not so sure he could be worse though, at least not on the international level. As to the domestic matters, a lot of harm has been done already, between the environment and women's and minorities' rights.

At least we won't have childish tantrums and wacko tweets every day...

We'll just have to wait and see, won't we. Pale sigh
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 5:58 pm    Post subject: Everyone's been asking... Reply with quote

How can we get rid of Trump?

America is not happy!

Not amused!

Now We Know What Every State Has Been Stressed About Since the Election
GQ
Someone please check on Mississippi.

People have been asking a lot of questions since the election: How can we get rid of Trump? What the hell actually is the electoral college? Why didn't Hillary bother to campaign in Michigan? Even, like, a little bit? To that end, the good folks over at Estately, a website I have definitely heard of before, have used the latest in data-tracking technology (a lot of trial and error via analytics) to determine what each state has been Googling the most since Trump's ascension to the highest office in the land.

These "what each state has Googled" maps are tricky; they come with all manner of caveats and would be very easy to completely fabricate should some unscrupulous publication become hungry enough for clicks, so please bear in mind that A) these are politics-themed searches only, as I'm sure people are still reading Walking Dead recaps way more than they are a rundown of Betsy DeVos's policies, and B) these are what these states are Googling MORE than the others, not the straight-up most. Anyway, let's take a look:



Someone please check on Mississippi.

A few things jump out right off the bat: Washington is still beating that "West Coast secession" drum, which is as unrealistic as it is shortsighted and selfish. North Dakota just doesn't know what to do, resulting in the very blunt, very sad top search trend of "PROTEST????????????". Kansas seems to be completely overwhelmed by the entire occasion, and is conflating multiple news stories with "Kellyanne Conway Punch." And, perhaps most glaringly of all, Mississippi, WYD?

One thing seems pretty obvious from all 50 of these results, though: Even the deepest of red states aren't planning a party for Trump anytime soon. Louisiana has an all-encompassing "Trump Anxiety" on the brain, Idaho is getting cold feet about the appointment of Mattis, and Arizona just wants the hell out of here. Come on, Arizona. If California can't leave, you guys sure the heck can't.

http://www.gq.com/story/post-election-google-searches-by-state
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 3:53 am    Post subject: 56% of Dems Want Leaders to Block Trump Reply with quote

56% of Dems Want Leaders to Block Trump

Fifty-six percent of Democrats say party's elected officials in Congress should stop President Trump’s efforts, even “if that means blocking all legislation or nominees for government posts,” according to a new Politico and Morning Consult poll. Only 34 percent of those same voters surveyed said they believe party leaders should find common ground to work with the White House. The survey was conducted among 2,070 registered voters from Feb. 2 to Feb. 4. “There was talk after the election that Trump might be a president who Democrats could work with, at least on certain issues like infrastructure,” said Kyle Dropp, Morning Consult’s chief research officer and co-founder. “But this new data indicates that, even if deals are possible, that’s not primarily what Democratic voters are looking for.”

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/02/trump-democrats-poll-234778
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:19 pm    Post subject: Gee, what does it take? Reply with quote

Abuse of power, ethical/conflict of interest concerns*, putting the country in danger with ill-thought-out executive orders, alienating allied countries... All that in less than three weeks!!

* For that one, see http://www.avenueviet.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=5458

Geez Louise, what DOES it take for Congress to realize that this guy is a total disaster - to use his own terminology - and impeach him before he does more harm to the office of the president, to the country and to the world? Question
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