The President Tweets this..

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… to describe a specific area and group of Americans. 

“a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess” [a place] “where no human being would want to live.”

These are the loving, respectful words the president wrote in a tweet yesterday to describe a group of people (read subhuman) and where they live in The United States, which is the Maryland Congressional District represented by Congressman Elijah Cummings. No elaboration is required to describe the meaning or intent of the quote, and no apology or show of remorse could ever atone for the disgusting slur. So, I’ll go directly to the business at hand – that is to learn who will defend the president in perhaps his most despicable barrage of hatred and unseemly criticism to date.

To learn the answer, I pose two direct questions – (1) Do you believe the comment is racist? and (2) do you denounce the president for his attack? Answer in one of the following combinations where the letters in each answer are answers to questions 1 and 2, respectively. You can leave a comment in support of your answer.

YY, YN, NY, NN

Please leave your answers here, not on facebook.

 

 

 

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An Assault On the Constitution

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Addendum To Post – July 7, 2019

The first quote below is an excerpt from an article posted by thehill.com. I don’t know much about that organization, but I know that the excerpt misrepresents how the census bureau has gathered information about a person’s citizenship over the course of American history from 1790 through 2010. The article does not dispel false narrative about this issue, but creates new ones.

“Lost in this partisan uproar is that a citizenship question has appeared in some form or another on censuses throughout our history. Indeed, it was only removed entirely in 2010 by President Obama, and its roots stretch deep into the founding era. It’s worth detailing the history to dispel all the false narratives. A question about citizenship was proposed for the first time in 1800 by Thomas Jefferson, who advocated for an inquiry into “the respective numbers of native citizens, citizens of foreign birth, and of aliens.”

Furthermore, the following excerpt leads me to believe that the writer does not know that information about citizenship cannot be used for purposes of apportionment of taxes and representatives among the several states. Article I, Section 2 of the constitution uses the word, “persons” not “citizens” in the original and amended versions of that article. Persons = citizens + non-citizens, any way you count it.

“After all, the census is used to draw congressional districts and assure the voters of each state are adequately represented in Congress. So, we are talking about information that has been collected throughout most of our history and is critical to the very core [of] democratic protections of the Constitution.”

I have done some research on how the questions on US citizenship have appeared on the census questionnaires during the entire history of the United States from 1790 through 2010. I state here my conclusions – which I believe are reasonably accurate, and I welcome comments in the way of constructive criticism – to include corrections and suggestions.

I found no mention of US citizenship on the questionnaires for the census years between 1790 and 1840. I found no direct questions about citizenship on the questionnaires for the census years between 1850 and 1980, but the questionnaires for all census years contained several differently-worded questions about the birthplace of persons and sometimes about the birthplace of the person’s parents. I found the direct question: “Is the person a citizen of the Unites States? to first appear on the questionnaire for census year 1990 and it appeared again on the 2000 questionnaire. No questions related to where a person or the person’s parents were born is found on the 2010 census questionnaire. Most questions of that type were moved to the Community Survey Questionnaire.

Original Post – July 6,  2019

President Trump seems bound and determined to get a question on the 2020 census questionnaire about whether a respondent is also a citizen. Here is what the President said Friday about the reasons why this information is needed:

“Number one, you need it for Congress — you need it for Congress for redistricting. You need it for appropriations — where are the funds going? How many people are there? Are they citizens? Are they not citizens? You need it for many reasons.”

I can say nothing kinder about the President’s scattergun statement than that it’s totally false. Article I, Section 2 of the body of the Constitution calls for the census to count the number of “persons” (not citizens) each ten years, for the purpose of apportioning representatives and taxes among the states. The XIV Amendment, Section 2 which modifies that section of the constitution retains the word “person.” Therefore, knowing how many of the persons counted are US citizens (or not) can have no bearing on that apportionment.

But if a state has a significant number of non-citizens who choose to avoid the census count for any reason, like fear of being deported, that state could lose some of its representation in congress as well as federal funds, the state deserves by law. The reason is obvious why the President wants the questionnaire in the census; it’s to discourage participation of non-citizens, which he believes will help the Republican Party gain seats in congress. The President’s base support is mostly white and any action, legal or illegal, which suppresses the vote of non-whites will help him get re-elected. Local and State politicians  particularly in the south, have always used numerous forms of discrimination and suppression to deny minorities, especially African Americans, their right to vote – and it didn’t matter what political party was in power. However, I don’t recall until now that a President ever took the lead in the suppression of  minority voting.

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Don and Kim May Meet For Ping-Pong

President Trump recently met and shook hands with Kim Jong Un in the demilitarized zone that separates the two Korean countries and then stepped into North Korea, something never done before by a US President. That happened after Trump invited Kim to meet him there – and after Kim sent Don a birthday card and a letter in an envelope bearing the four English letters, “SWAK.” President Trump wants their next meeting to be at Trump’s Mari Lago Golf Resort. He told Kim they could have official meetings between their golf matches and secret rendezvous and that he would only charge Kim half the going price for his stay and services. Kim wants the meeting to take place again in the demilitarized zone where he thinks they should begin by having tea, followed by a game of ping pong. He wants the ping-pong table to double as the official meeting table, and wants it to take the shape of the Korean Peninsula and to straddle the line that separates North Korea and South Korea. The president would like for the table to be round because he likes to cut corners, but seems agreeable to Kim’s suggestions.

If the President accepts Kim’s offer, other important issues which must be settled include who will serve first in the ping pong match and whether Don and Kim will change ends of the table at specified times, as outlined in ping pong rules. The latter comes to mind because it would seem odd for either player to defend from a position located in the other’s country. Another perplexing issue is who will be the stand in for each player to help settle disputes during the game. The same person would also replace a player in case he is injured or disqualified. Trump might be hard put to find a stand-in because he is so mistrusted, and Kim doesn’t have anyone whom he trusts. These and a multitude other issues will be debated when negotiations begin in about a month. Until then, as the President says, “we’ll have to wait and see.”

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Oh, Lincoln! – A Verse by Bobill

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I made this several years ago at Lincoln’ Memorial.

Oh, Lincoln! – by Bobill

Oh, Lincoln, you should be living at this hour!
As in your days as President, these are perilous times,
And America has need, of you.
To some, our President seems to side with our enemies,
And to scorn and shun our friends –
And appears to prefer autocracy to democracy.
Some believe he proposes measures that would deny equal justice
To persons he deems as unworthy Americans –
And builds needless barriers against all manner of perceived threats –
From within and from out the country.
And finally, some believe he stretches the perception of truth
Until the distinction between fact and fiction –
Become blurred –
To such limits as fits his purpose.
Send a sign, oh wise and just, Lincoln –
On the wings of our better Angels –
That those who doubt the president’s motives
Might see better to discern —
Whether they misjudge the President’s purpose by his actions –
Or whether he is truly a threat to our liberty –
As emblazoned in our beloved Constitution!

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Mueller Testimony perilous for Democrats – by Bobill

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What Robert Mueller says (or does not say) under oath before two different congressional committees could help or hurt the democrats’ case for impeachment of the president.

President Trump has claimed loudly and often that the Mueller Report concludes there was “no collusion and no obstruction” In the 2016 presidential election. The democrats claim that the report shows the exact opposite. They claim that only a few people have read the 448-page report and thus are uninformed, or in some cases misinformed, because of the way Attorney General Barr handled the release of the report. They believe that if the American people see and hear Mr. Mueller explain under oath what’s in the report, including its conclusions, they will agree that the president and his campaign have committed crimes worthy of impeachment and prosecution.

So, congressional Democrats are delighted that Robert Mueller has agreed to testify before the congressional Judiciary and Intelligence Committees. That’s because the democrats believe Mueller will say, publicly (and under oath) that the investigators drew two all-important conclusions: 1 – That at least some members of the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians to help Trump get elected President, and 2 – that President Trump obstructed justice by attempting to impede the progress, or even shut down, the investigation on several different occasions. To the Democrats and to many of us who have read much, or all, of the Mueller Report – these conclusions are self-evident, but the report is not explicit on either of these important points.

Mueller made it clear that he did not want to testify before congress and agreed to testify only after he received a subpoena. He also says he is unwilling to say more than what is in the report. So, if Mueller refuses to be more explicit in his testimony about whether the president’s campaign colluded with the Russians to help Trump win the election, that could be a blow to the democrats’ case on the charge of collusion. Furthermore, if Mueller refuses to testify directly that Trump attempted to impede the investigation, that could mean more harm to their case against him for obstruction of justice. That would put the president in a much stronger position to fend off further attempts to investigate him and his campaign and would likely hurt the democrats in the 2020 presidential election.

In conclusion, if Mr. Mueller says publicly and under oath what the democrats believe he will, that testimony will likely convince much of the public that the president committed crimes and will strengthen the democrats’ case if they decide to go forward with impeachment of the president. However, if Mr. Mueller refuses to testify directly that the president’s aids colluded with the Russians or that the president attempted to impede his investigation, that will give credence to the president’s claim that the Mueller Report proves there was “no collusion or obstruction” – and that the report was, from the beginning, “a hoax and a witch hunt.” So, as the president often says, we’ll have to wait and see.

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First Lady announces New WH Press Secretary

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Photo: thesource.com

First Lady announced New WH Press Secretary with this tweet” on June 25.

“I am pleased to announce Stephanie Grisham will be the next [WH] Press Secretary and Communications Director. She has been with us since 2015, and I can think of no better person to serve the Administration and our country. Excited to have Stephanie working for both sides of the White House.”

Ms. Grisham has been the Communications Director for the first lady, and outgoing Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders had this to say about Grisham:

“During the campaign, she developed a good relationship with the president, and that carried through. She has developed a great amount of trust from both the president and the first lady, which is a pretty high commodity here.”

Thanks to Sarah Huckabee Sanders, we know now that Ms. Grisham has gained a great amount of respect from the president. Now, let’s hope that Ms. Grisham and the Press work together to gain one another’s trust and respect, something that did not happen between Sara Huckabee Sanders and the Press. The question remains: can anyone who represents the president be honest and transparent in dealing with the Press – and still hold on to the president’s support? Like the president often says, we’ll have to wait and see.

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Social Security Benefits – An Unfair Proposal

The process to qualify for benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA) due to a disability can be long and complicated, because the SSA must consider multiple factors in making the determination for eligibility. Under the current SSA rules, the inability to speak English is one of those factors which must be considered. The SSA describes the reason for including this English language factor in making that determination:

“Because English is the dominant language of the country (USA) it may be difficult for someone who doesn’t speak and understand English to do a job, regardless of the amount of education the person may have in another language,” the SSA says in section 404.1564 of the administration’s code of federal regulations. “Therefore, we consider a person’s ability to communicate in English when we evaluate what work, if any, he or she can do.”

President Trump’s administration is now considering eliminating the inability to speak English as a factor when considering eligibility to receive disability benefits. One of the main reasons cited by the administration for changing the rules is that applicants in Puerto Rico where English is not the primary language are using their inability in English as a basis for receiving disability benefits. What a singularly ridiculous excuse to deny disability benefits to applicants who do not speak English in the continental Unities States – where English is the primary language. Donald Trump was anti-immigration from the day he announced his candidacy for President, and the proposed rule changes target immigrants, and specifically those from South America. I have read that as many as 10,500 disabled applicants may be denied disability benefits under the proposed rules.

Here’s an example of the consequences that the new rules may have. Two men, each age 45, are seriously injured while working at their construction jobs, which they have held for 20 years and both have paid social security taxes for that period. Both are family men with unblemished criminal records and both have served in the US military. Now, both apply for disability benefits – and both are denied those benefits, but for starkly different reasons: the first, because he speaks English and the second, because he does not. The first will likely get another job because he can speak English, and the second won’t be able to get a job and must wait almost 20 years to get his SSA benefits. The proposal is patently unfair and may violate the second man’s XIV amendment rights of “equal protection under the law.” Leave me accomment to let me know how you feel about this important matter, and don’t forget to let your congressional representatives know how you feel.

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