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Thoughts on Events the Week of January 15

Posted in Uncategorized by EloiSVM42 on January 22, 2018

Have we hit bottom yet?: Last week will surely go down as one of our low points in governance.

The Budget AND Immigration?: Our  Republican-controlled  (keep that in mind) Congress, which has been dysfunctional, incompetent, impotent and cowardly for a decade or more, decided to take on two major issues at once and very quickly. (Apparently they are becoming like Trump, to whom everything is easy, if you don’t waste time giving it any thought.) It was bound to end badly, and it did…with a government shutdown.

Immediately, and I mean within minutes after the failed vote, both parties began blaming the other and calling each other names, not perhaps the best way to improve comity for a restart.

Democrats and Republicans, even in this febrile, partisan pressure cooker, tried more or less in good faith to negotiate an agreement. After all, President Trump said bring him an agreement and he’d sign it, whatever it is. But when Republican and Democratic Senators did so last Tuesday, he rejected it, throwing things into chaos, hardening already bitter feelings, and destroying all trust.

There are presently three “parties” in America: Republicans, Democrats and Trump’s base, basically rabid right flank Republicans. Trump will always align with this base (keep that in mind). They were largely responsible for getting him elected, and he loves their adoration – which means our government is run by a minority of far right reactionaries who are more angry and irrational than educated or informed.

It is reported that Trump rejected the negotiated agreement over the DACA clause because his base hates immigrants of any color except perhaps white.

I may be the greater fool here, but I am not so sure that, as is claimed, politicians have no incentive to compromise with their opposite party. True, the parties are dug in, but by now, voters of both have got to be sick and tired of the gridlock. If politicians would move on ideas that are very popular with voters of both parties, such as DACA and Chip, instead of holding them hostage to ideas that are anathema to the other side, I think voters would think better of them.

I am truly offended when I hear the so called Dreamers smeared as illegal immigrants by Republican leaders. They are no such thing. They are undocumented, but they are not illegal.

Dreamers did not sneak into the country. They came as young, innocent children, holding the hand of their parents or relatives when they crossed the border, just as they would if they were being helped crossing a street, trusting and obeying their adults.

The Dreamers have now lived here for years and have grown up to be productive, tax paying citizens. What more do they have to do to be recognized and accepted by Trump’s hyper-xenophobic base?

Parting Partisan Shot: unless and until they get DACA and Chip agreements, the Democrats would be out of their minds to agree to a continuing resolution lasting beyond the State of the Union Address. Let the shutdown hang around the neck of the President when he gives his speech.

The President and the Stripper: It’s not exactly Laurence Olivier and Marilyn Monroe in The Prince and the Showgirl, but apparently Trump hooked up with a woman who strips by the name of Stormy Daniels, and paid her $130,000 just before his election to reverse roles and keep her mouth shut.

To be clear, I don’t care who Trump is fooling around with. It’s his business and none of my own…unless it affects his job performance. (I will forever retain the image of President Clinton getting a blow job from Miss Lewinski while working the phones with Congresspersons. That’s compartmentalization!)

Now, if Miss Daniels were a Russian operative and Trump’s dalliance with her was being used to influence his behavior on the job (read blackmail him), that would be another thing entirely.

Football: The Patriots v Jaguars game was well worth watching. New England gave another spectacular come from behind performance to win it in the last quarter. I define true champions as those who win over time, not just now and then, or just once. New England is the Archetype of this, as Dallas used to be. My hat is off to them.

The Eagles v Vikings game went about as I expected, though oddly far differently than the odds makers expected when they made Philadelphia a 2 ½ point dog, AT HOME. What were they thinking? It was only by one highly improbable, miracle play that the Vikings were there at all. The Eagles were the better team. What’s more, both teams were playing with their backup quarterback, and Philadelphia’s is much better than Minnesota’s.

More important, my beloved Oklahoma Sooners signed TWO Five Star football recruits for next season, one a defensive end – existential in a passing conference -, and the other an offensive lineman big enough to play two positions at once.

Status of the States: I’ve been too sick with a bad cold this week to follow state level shenanigans. No winner declared.

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