Archive for October, 2016

“Life on Pluto”

October 30, 2016


He unraveled.

Back in the day, folks would say he had a “nervous breakdown.”

Yet it is difficult not characterizing FBI Director James Comey as being other than a self-righteous, supercilious, sanctimonious fool — in plain English — dismissing him as a selfish jerk.

Such designation is seemingly warranted for displaying such a deluded, distorted sense of purist personal integrity at the expense of an overriding national interest in our collective security.

Comey tossed a live grenade into the final days of Election 2016 on Friday in the form of an inexplicably terse, extraordinarily ill advised and possibly illegal announcement that the Bureau had suddenly stumbled upon certain emails that appeared “to be pertinent” to Comey’s testimony under oath before members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

While Comey had agreed to keep the Committee informed of any substantial new developments in the case of Clinton’s emails, it didn’t take much time before it became evident that that Comey, acting alone and against the advice of his boss, Attorney General Loretta Lynch and other top Justice Department officials, didn’t have any idea what he was declaring — the word “clueless” coming to mind both literally and figuratively. There didn’t seem to be much substance in the “substantial development” after all.

This new possibly “pertinent” material had been found on a laptop computer belonging to Anthony Weiner, husband of Huma Abedin, long time assistant to Hillary Clinton. Weiner is under FBI investigation for prurient activities involving his surname — otherwise defined and immodestly transmitted.

When the ship hit the sand in a megaton media explosion rivaling the discovery of life on Pluto, Comey hurriedly sent out a staff memo that sheepishly confessed, “Given that we don’t know the significance of this newly discovered collection of emails, I don’t want to create a misleading impression.” He added, “In the middle of an election cycle, there is a significant risk of being misunderstood.”

Yep. He nailed it there.

Here’s Donald Trump bellowing onstage only moments after word got out: “This is bigger than Watergate!” – to which his characteristically menacing mob, red hats stylishly substituting for the more traditional brown shirts, screamed at the top of their tobacco encrusted lungs, “Lock her up! Lock her up!”

 Just down the road, 22nd District Congressman Devin Nunes, in a typical break from reality, told Fox News on Sunday, “I just don’t see Director Comey opening this case back up 11 days before the election unless it is quite serious.” Representative Nunes is chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. This thought alone dramatically demonstrates the desirability of electing a Democratic House majority come Tuesday.

 Although I hate being redundant let alone repeat myself, here’s what was observed in this column way back on July 21st:

 “James Comey is the straightest man I’ve ever seen on national TV – the ultimate Boy Scout — as tight as a mouse’s rear stretched over a barrel. He is extraordinarily conscientious, perhaps even perilously proper to extremes. When he scratches an itch, he thinks it’s sex.”

This was written in the context of trying to figure out why Comey had felt compelled to add the word “extremely” to his assessment of Hillary Clinton being “careless” with her email handling, although he also had testified that Mrs. Clinton wasn’t the first Secretary of State to use a private server. Far from it. Such judgment didn’t seem to fit with Comey’s more important bottom line evaluation that Hillary hadn’t done anything remotely approaching criminal behavior, nor had those with whom she worked. He later said this decision wasn’t even a close call. I surmised that “extremely” was unfortunately incorporated into the Director’s presentation in a doomed effort to placate former Republican friends hating Hillary and dedicated to her destruction.

After weeks of being referenced in the alt right press as a moral moron, legal loser and hack for Hillary, Comey panicked at news of the Weiner revelation and yielded to irresponsible self-interest in fear of further infuriating conservative sensitivities.

In detonating his bombshell, James Comey sought to present us with a dutifully delivered exclamation point, but instead produced a divisive, highly prejudicial question mark.

Here is a man thought above reproach falling far below the most minimal standards of dutiful responsibility.

Appropriate resolution? Immediate expression of regret, followed by eventual resignation.

Uncertainty is ubiquitous. Few things are absolute. Blurred lines abound.

Loosen up, Jimmy.

Confidence born of constricted consciousness muddles minds and limits life.

Those who dwell in a black and white world never see rainbows.

“Lady and The Trump”

October 24, 2016


It was Round Three.

The lady looked lovely. The Trump looked scared.

The biggest laugh of the night came when The Trump said, “Nobody has more respect for women than I do. Nobody!”

This proved to be too much for an audience pledged to silence.

Muffled giggles quickly yielded to choked chuckles before finally bursting into loud, unrestrained laughter. After all, it’s not just a “He said/She said” anymore. Now it’s a “He said/She said /She said/ She said/ She said/ She said/ She said/ She said /She said/ She said/She said /She said– with more to come.

Even though Secretary Clinton continues to climb in polling with the election just 11 days away, it’s clear The Trump still commands a significant amount of national support, particularly remarkable in the light of his demonstrable deficiencies and utter unsuitability for high office.

In far too many quarters, civic ignorance reins supreme.

“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, it expects what never was and never will be” – Thomas Jefferson (1816)

It is important to remember that “ignorant” does not mean dim, dumb, or demented. The most basic dictionary definition of “ignorant” is simply “lack of knowledge.” At a deeper functional level, Webster points out that the root verb “ignore” specifically means “to deliberately disregard, pay no attention to or refuse to consider.”

I sadly suggest that millions of our fellow citizens who regard themselves as law abiding, God-fearing, patriotic Americans are convincingly well intended, but critically clueless as to how government works. You can’t fix it if you don’t understand it. You can’t understand it if you don’t study it. You can’t study it if you don’t want to learn. You can’t learn anything without an open mind.

Four years ago – way before The Trump started his pursuit of the presidency — here’s what former Supreme Court Justice David Souter said at a public forum on the U.S. Constitution in New Hampshire: “When problems are not addressed, what I worry about is that people will not know whom to blame. Some one person will come along and say, “Give me total power and I will solve these problems. This is how the Roman Republic fell. This is the way democracy dies.”

 Behold – The Trump.

“I am your voice! I alone can fix it! I will restore law and order!”

 Donald Trump, although wildly unprepared, clinically crazy and thoroughly thuggish, is nevertheless correct about crushing inequity.

The top one-tenth of one percent of all Americans owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent. More than one half of all new income generated since the Wall Street Crash of 2008 has gone to the top 1 percent. We are working longer hours for lower wages and have one of the highest child poverty rates on the planet with a quarter of our kids going to bed hungry tonight.

It is un-American to ignore such things.

According to Fortune Magazine, the U.S.A. currently is confronted with the largest inequality gap of any major nation in the entire free world. Our economy IS “rigged” against the middle class, let alone those even more unfavorably positioned. Flag waving Trump cheerleaders at revved up rallies boisterously chanting “U.S.A. – U.S.A.” are ironically paying continuing tribute to their own escalating decline.

Worried about “The Establishment?”

The Trump IS “The Establishment” – a self-proclaimed billionaire and self-confessed sexual predator who’s scammed the system, cheated on wives, conned contractors, flaunted the rules, scorned “losers” stupid enough to pay taxes, and credits no one but himself on all he is and has – a narcissistic megalomaniac loose in our midst.

Hillary Clinton has paid her dues and then some.

This lady was the first ever student commencement speaker at Wellesley College, a distinguished graduate of Yale Law School, a former Law Professor at the University of Arkansas, a former First Lady of Arkansas and First Lady of the United States. The lady was elected twice to the U.S. Senate from New York, the second time in 2006 with 67 percent of the vote against her Republican rival’s 31 percent. That’s a two to one win. Then she served for four years as Secretary of State, having been appointed to that position by a former adversary who admired her intensity, intelligence and integrity.

As much as one might pillory Hillary for human flaws and failings, Donald Trump is a garbage dump.

I’m one old white guy who’s voting for the lady.

If The Trump doesn’t like it – he can sue me.


October 16, 2016


We have descended into madness.

In the face of outrageous, undisciplined, unprincipled behavior on the part of the Republican Party’s national standard bearer, a significant percentage of our fellow Americans are nonetheless prepared to leap off the ledge November 8th and cast their ballots for a mental midget whose tiny paws can’t stay where they belong.

Trump no longer speaks to the masses. He screams to the mobs with incendiary rhetoric more common in earlier times from Caligula’s throne, Mussolini’s balcony, or Hitler’s podium at Nuremberg.

A new acquaintance in his early 80’s just informed me that Democratic Vice-Presidential nominee Tim Kaine is a secret Muslim, running covert operations for ISIS in every major city across the land, recruiting dozens by the day. This gentleman faithfully watches FOX News, but caught wind of the Kaine conspiracy from a pal of his who watches Alex Jones on You Tube.

Jones is a multi-millionaire who’s made his fortune making up crazy stuff. What he comes up with is so far out that it gets reported by mainstream media, where ratings and revenue rule. Political correctness notwithstanding, everyone loves a freak show. This free promotion brings more viewers aboard who subscribe to his website, buy his books and ring that cash register. Ka-Ching. Alex makes them feel smart. They make Alex rich.

Alex scored again last week, saying this about Hillary Clinton: “She is an abject, psychopathic demon from hell that as soon as she gets into power is going to try and destroy the planet.” Jones added that President Obama is a demon too, “and they both smell like sulfur.” I understand this caused quite a stir the following morning in early risers’ coffee cups at Judy’s Donut Club, aging heads nodding in tacit agreement over how we really do need to be great again.

In many circles, rhyme and reason have been banished from discussion. Nothing matters except keeping Hillary and Bill Clinton from returning to the White House.

No matter what, mystifying consensus continues to pretend there’s a genuine possibility that Donald Trump can bring back all those jobs lost in the rust belt, create a giant border wall from sea to shining sea paid for by the people of Mexico, end poverty in the inner cities, replace The Affordable Care Act with something “much, much better”, deport millions of “illegal immigrants”, quickly defeat “Radical Islamic Terrorism” within weeks, balance the budget by the Fourth of July, teach dogs how to talk and knock down the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor to make way for “Trump Tower Two”, the highest human edifice ever created, stretching 238,857 miles into the sky all the way to the moon.

A primary argument heard from Trumpies and Trumpettes is that our next President will be appointing a number of new Justices to the Supreme Court, perhaps as many as three or four. They fanaticize that while Hillary would surely nominate Communists, at least Trump, nuts or not, is a much safer bet. Hah!

What if Donald “Law and Order” Trump decides to put a real cop on the Court and chooses his buddy, Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, Jr. for such powerful distinction? Clarke is a major supporter of Mr. Trump. Sheriff Clarke’s latest pronouncement on the pending election was that “It’s incredible that our institutions of government, the White House, Congress, the Department of Justice and big media are corrupt. Pitchfork and torches time!” This tweeted appeal for a violent patriotic uprising surely suggests that Clarke would be an ideal, ruthless enforcer of stern judicial wisdom in a Trump administration. Take no prisoners. Just shoot them. Our safety will be secured.

Jumper Tom McClintock, our Fourth District Congressional Representative in this neck of the woods, still seems reticent to accept my humble recommendation of several months ago to “scrape Donald Trump from the bottom of (his) boot”. However, I feel it most appropriate to conclude this column commending Tom for his recent decision to support Proposition 64 legalizing recreational marijuana in California. Representative McClintock properly observes, “Legalization take the criminal profit out of the equation and allows us to regulate marijuana the same way we currently regulate alcohol.

I’ll smoke to that.



“Poodle’s Puddle”

October 7, 2016


There are established predictors.

When a Pope seeks signs of divine selection in nominees for Catholic Sainthood, he demands a minimum of two confirmed miracles.

As Napoleon Bonaparte would review junior officers for elevation to higher military status, he would ask of their superiors, “Are they “lucky?””

And in considering candidates for managerial promotion in our radio group when I was Chief Operating Officer, I would always openly wonder if those offered for selection were “housebroken.”

By this I would hope to determine whether the parties under consideration had that certain, indefinable, instinctive grace to behave properly with acceptable decorum and effective action when confronted by surprising, often unpredictable, even unsettling situations — achieving a positive outcome without embarrassing themselves or the company in the process. Using that word came into my head early on. I always found “housebroken” easily understood and awesomely functional.

In evaluating our recent Vice-Presidential debate between Democrat Tim Kaine and Republican Mike “The Poodle” Pence, I must suggest this Poodle is not housebroken.

For purposes of full disclosure, I herein admit that I watched the proceedings with supremely subjective bias, screaming at my flat screen with wild invectives every time Poodle offered yet another lame defense of the indefensible and hoping in each instance that Kaine would simply reach over and soundly, savagely slap him.

See? This whole election process has me passionately out of control. I offer no apology. Any other response would seem disgustingly irrational and wholly inadequate, yet I do promise to externally behave much more than not with professional propriety, desiring to break no houses myself in offering admirable adult example to twelve impressionable grandchildren and any number of their small domestic pets.

As my own Irish grandfather, William McClaskey, once warned, “Never trust a man with not a hair our of place!” I suppose that’s when my own instinctive dislike of Pence first started. This judgment has been consistently reaffirmed ever since.

The embarrassing doglike loyalty Pence unapologetically offers in his relationship with The Donald earns Mike his Poodle nickname and was evidenced once again only hours after the debate.

Concerned that Trumpty was infuriated with reports that Pence had pulled off a better and more distinguished performance than his Excellency, Pence proclaimed, “Some people thought I won, but from where I sat, Donald Trump won. His vision to make America great again carried the day!” This fawningly confirmed Trump’s instant public declaration after the sparring concluded that he was “getting lots of credit” for choosing Mike Pence as his running mate and that was his “first hire.” This attempts to erase memory of Donald’s initial campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, who was fired for general incompetence just before Pence’s selection. The Trumpster’s second organizational chief, Paul Manafort, was dismissed only days later for receiving multi-million dollar pay-offs from pro-Russian clients. Some relationships offer more immediate compensation than eventual comfort.

Although remaining calm, cool and collected during the proceedings, particularly when compared with his master, Pence’s puddle became dramatically self-evident once fact checking was underway. Keeping faith with campaign culture as he displayed a perfectly straight face and ramrod straight composure, Poodle lied his tail off. This splashed down smoothly without the slightest hint of embarrassment.

Abundant evidence easily available to the contrary, Pence repeatedly denied almost everything both he and Trump have said during the course of the campaign. A true indictment of the currently bewildered state and sadly predictable future of the Republican Party can be found in a new, widely held popular opinion in GOP land. The whispered word is that even if Pence didn’t really do Trump that much good in the debate, at least he brilliantly got a leg up on future competitors, establishing himself as Trump’s inevitable successor.

Voices of darkest desperation thus ring with hollow hope.

Lasting shame, thy name is Trump.

Thy pooch is Poodle Pence.

“Voice Your Choice”

October 7, 2016


Presidential Campaign 2016 has less than five weeks to go.

Here’s a question for “undecided voters”.

What’s wrong with you?

On January 20, 2017, either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will become the 45th President of the United States.

The only message a vote for Libertarian Gary Johnson or Green Party candidate Jill Stein might send is that you placed personal political purity over practical public priority. Sorry. I’m not impressed.

Not voting is also a vote letting others choose your future — putting on your slave collar. Surrender to surroundings? I’d rather fight.

Never before in my lifetime have I seen two candidates for the highest office in our land being more decidedly different in style and substance by any meaningful measure. This is not an election calling for deep philosophical reflection on positions presented followed by a rigorous review of issues, ideas and initiatives. The Democratic and Republican standard bearers are polar opposites this time out. It’s left or right. On or off. Up or down. Come on. Commit.

Although Hillary Clinton was not my first choice to lead this nation, she’s the only one now. Please.

The churlish cries of “Hillary lies” have become a primary rallying screech for most who oppose her election, yet ask anyone to honestly cite a single specific accusation not yet extensively explored and thoroughly discredited. Other than shameful sheep bleats from the FOX NEWS echo chamber (please watch where you step), silence will reign. All charges involving Benghazi, Emails and The Clinton Foundation fall into this category. For extended examination and grueling analysis to the point of utter exhaustion and sporadic suicidal impulses, you may check out past “For Your Consideration” columns at That’s what it’s there for. The new format is really cool.

Sniff. Donald J. Trump, on the other hand, is a spectacular liar. Sniff. It was super easy picking a new “Top 10 Donald Doozies” just from that last debate alone. Sniff. Trump rudely (he interrupted Hillary 55 different times — 40 in the first 26 minutes) and loudly (his microphone was working perfectly well) lied about the following items before 82.5 million viewers.

Setting The Record Straight Thanks to Rachel Maddow

Bill Clinton did NOT sign NAFTA. George H. W. Bush did.

Trump DID go on record saying that global warming was a “Chinese Hoax” and he did so more than once.

Trump DID repeatedly question President Obama’s citizenship long after the President released his official Birth Certificate.

The New York City murder rate is going DOWN, not UP as Trump insisted.

Trump WAS in favor of invading Iraq in 2003 before it happened.

Hillary Clinton has NOT been fighting ISIS “all of her adult life.”

Hillary did NOT start the “Birther” movement.

“Stop and Frisk” WAS ruled unconstitutional by a Federal judge.

Trump DID suggest that he would “negotiate down the national debt.”

Trump DID support our Libyan involvement at the outset.

As witnessed above, a fair comparison between Hillary and Donald on the “fibbing front” seems quite one-sided. Are you kidding?

In weighing such matters as demeanor, experience, focus, character, self-discipline, temperament, intelligence, preparation and performance, I submit that Secretary Clinton is infinitely preferable to Mr. Trump for these and other crucial qualities.

Yet with everything factored, we still see men, particularly those who have not attended college or finished high school (the man in your life?) favoring Donald over Hillary by double digits. Discounting other thoughts and theories in attempting to comprehend what seems inexplicable in Trump’s rise and at least temporary resilience in this grouping; the outrageous gender differential remarkably evident in every poll being taken surely suggests — that which dare not speak its name. Gynophobia.

Gynophobia: “An abnormal, extreme or irrational fear of women.”

It is important to note that gynophobia should not be confused with misogyny, which references hatred and contempt for women.

Gynophobes aren’t scornful — they’re simply scared.

Ladies, tell your guys it’s perfectly safe. Women make fine rulers. Look at Joan of Arc. Elizabeth the First. Maggie Thatcher. Rosie O’ Donnell.

Gentlemen, let’s climb into our big boy pants – the stretchy ones from Duluth.

Barack Obama has declared that no candidate in modern history has been “more prepared than Hillary Clinton” to assume the office of the American presidency. In that assessment, President Obama includes himself and Hillary’s husband.

It’s hard imagining anyone less prepared than Trump.

Unless it’s Pence.