Did you see the news clip of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi visiting the Oval Office to discuss funding with President Trump for the wall across our southern border? They had no idea Trump invited the media for a truly transparent meeting. Americans were going to be privy to the details of their discussion of whether to shut the government down, again. We were going to see how the sausage was made.
You could tell by their body language Chuck and Nancy were uncomfortable with media attendance. It's evidently near impossible to play partisan politics when the world is looking in. They appeared as a couple of fish out of water. Schumer could hardly lift his head. This from the man who never saw a camera he didn’t want to stick his head in front of.
Unless you’re Donald Trump. He showed a spine and made a threat on national television. Making good on a campaign pledge (hey, there's an idea!) he stated he would shut the government down if they did not fund the wall. And then he rightfully did.
President Trump clearly showed the buck does indeed stop with him, ala Harry Truman. Keep in mind, this month's government shutdown is not America's first rodeo with a shutdown, as we have survived past episodes of this political posturing at the expense of a few governmental employees. Bet we would never have a shutdown if the politicians were among those not getting paid.
Not having the intestinal fortitude to make charges to Trump's face in the White House or the camera in her face, Pelosi and Schumer waited until they got away to twist everything and make snide remarks. They railed against Trump for having the audacity to shut down the government, as if they haven't been involved in previous government shutdowns themselves.
Schumer stood on the Senate floor the following day and made it clear he had no intention of funding the wall, which he has since repeated. Note that in 2009 he stood on that same floor and bellowed exactly the opposite.
Schumer can make this charge because as Senate Minority Leader he controls the Democrats in the Senate. Sixty votes would be needed to pass the wall funding in the Senate, which would require the vote of ten Democrats. Schumer won't allow them to vote their conscious...they must vote party line or risk being shunned from Schumer. If a Democratic Senator were to vote a way that Schumer had not authorized, that Senator might find their desk in the parking lot.
Absurdly, Democrats Joe Donnelly from Indiana and Joe Manchin from West Virginia have been running ads in their respective states telling their constituents they would vote for the wall - a flat out lie.
In a 2009 speech to Georgetown Law, Schumer stated, "The American people are fundamentally pro-legal immigration and anti-illegal immigration. We will only pass comprehensive reform when we recognize this fundamental concept...First, illegal immigration is wrong. And a primary goal of comprehensive immigration reform must be to dramatically curtail future illegal immigration.”
You can find Schumer’s 2009 speech on YouTube. I researched for similar results on Nancy Pelosi and learned it’s difficult to decipher where Ms. Pelosi stands on any issue, as she flips and flops often...in the same speech. Sometimes she even speaks of skunk urine. After listening to her babbles, avoiding being mesmerized by her flailing hands, one comes away wondering what is it she just said. But she too flopped her opinion of illegal immigration sometime in the past 5-6 years.
So, one has to wonder, is the position of the Democratic party one of hatred towards Trump, or perhaps somebody figured out that those illegal immigrants were future Democratic voters. We know it’s both…and it’s puerile.
The language used against a sitting president of the U.S. is unethical and disrespectful. Had similar language been used against the former president, charges of racism would have been bellowed throughout the country. And for the record, Mr. Trump does not take a salary for this abuse.
So now, the government is officially shut down as the two sides play a game of chicken. "Non-essential government employees" (excuse the redundancy) have been sent home without pay, just as Christmas arrived. I could write a whole other column about “non-essential employees,” but you probably get the irony as well.
Stay tuned, the Democrats (and Republican Rhino's) take over the House in January and will continue with obstruction and useless talk of impeachment for the next two years, all at our expense.
By the way, during this shutdown, the “official Mueller Witch-Hunt” goes on…with pay.
T’was the night before Christmas, when all through the land,
Not a creature was stirring, ‘cept the semis all manned,
With truckers, weeks on the road, delivering freight,
Now trying to get back home, afore it’s too late.
The children are nestled, all snug in their beds,
With visions of daddy’s return dawdling in heads.
And mamma in her nightgown, such a hectic week,
Had just settled herself down, lonesome and meek.
She’s uneasy for her trucker to return safe and sound,
She knows he’ll be hurrying to come back ‘round.
To be home with family by this Christmas morn,
To celebrate the momentous day our Savior was born.
The moon had lain on the breast of the new fallen snow,
She wanted him to stay, but understood he must go.
Praying all day; to their home he would again appear,
Surely, he’s getting close, no doubt he had to be near.
She thought of his eyes, oh how they can twinkle!
And the withered forehead; now covered in wrinkle.
The silvery hair on his head, long may it grow,
And the stubble of his chin is now white as the snow;
He’s getting heavy and plump, a right jolly old elf,
Smiling at thinking of his belly, in spite of herself.
A wink of his eye though is all that is required,
To be home safely this wintry night is what she desired.
He’s sometimes not shaved, and is prone to a foul mood,
Tarnished he may be; and sometimes a little rude.
But you see, he’s been cursed on the road; delayed at a dock,
And it's his travels making sure Christmas gifts are in stock.
While folks arrange Christmas to enjoy this magic season,
Trucker’s deliver goods all over for good reason.
Shelves are now filled; a livelihood; a way to support family,
Taking him farther from home than he sometimes wants to be.
Now he’s another lonely trucker on this Holiest of flights,
Driving highways to home as Nature puts up a fight.
But mamma knows he’ll hurry, following his headlights,
Oh Lord, please bring him home safely tonight.
When, what to her wondering eyes should appear,
A big ‘ol eighteen-wheel semi becoming oh so clear.
Yes, it’ a blue Pete, and pulling a white trailer-van,
She knew in a moment it was going to be her man.
More rapid than eagles, his coursers they came,
And he whistled and shouted and called her by name.
To the top of the porch! and in through the door,
He dashed in the house and slid 'cross the floor.
He sprung to her side, and grabbed her in a hug,
She giggled with glee; “welcome home you big lug."
As they sat by the fireplace’ enjoying the warm light,
Smiling warmly, she whispered:
"Merry Christmas to all…
and to all a good-night!"
The Journal recently printed a "letter to the editor" message. A reader inferred that I might be the poster child for "Trumpism” considering my loyal support of President Trump as pertains to ongoing encounters with the media.
The internet is rife with definitions of the word Trumpism, and ranges from a badge of honor to a moron blindly following the likes of Hitler. While I consider the accusation more of the former, it was clear the reader considers me nearer the latter.
The letter writer is correct in that I do often opine about the biased postures expressed by the major media outlets across the country, and how it might persuade headline-readers negatively towards our President. I assert that if a person gets his/her news from the headline only, or just one source, then they may be deliberately misinformed by a decidedly left leaning media. Is it asking too much for a media source to report news accurately and fairly, without prejudice? Opinions should be left to the opinion pages, where one doesn’t have to tread to get their news and/or form their own opinions.
The Chicago Tribune is the eighth largest newspaper in the country and number one in Illinois. Absurdly, it considers itself conservative, evidently because they employ a good, but token conservative writer who appears on page 2. After page 2, it's a smorgasbord of liberal writers that have nothing better to write about than to rebuke Trump, the man the Tribune did not endorse.
The Trib's top headline in the Saturday, December 8th edition proclaimed underneath their banner, "Trump's revolving door spins again." The leading headline of a paper is where most eyes go, and sometimes is the only words seen by readers. The leading article was not written by the Trib, coming instead from two Associated Press writers.
So, let's break that headline down:
"Trump's" - Not "President Trump's," but merely "Trump's." No deference given to the office or the man.
"revolving door" - gives the impression of "in and out." Chaos rather than controlled structure.
"spins" - an action verb expressing the chaos of the revolving door.
"again" - suggests this is not the first-time chaos has happened.
If you read the story, and didn't get woozy from spin, the primary news is it appears Chief of Staff, John Kelly MIGHT be leaving, a fact later confirmed. It had not been confirmed by press time, but they felt compelled to report something. Kelly’s successor will be Trump's third Chief of Staff. A few other folks might be leaving, some to start the president's re-election campaign...but hardly a revolving door.
Looking back, home-town Trib favorite, Barack Obama had five Chiefs of Staff, including Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel. (Obama was the only Democrat the Tribune ever endorsed in their 170-year history.) President Clinton had four Chiefs as did President Regan.
A Chief of Staff oversees White House employees and manages the President's schedule. What's the big deal about changing the Chief – they don’t declare war? The Chiefs didn't make Reagan any greater, or Clinton any slimier. In fact, a case could be made their wives had more influence over either of them than any Chief.
Yet, the headline writers’ "spins" the headline to a negative connotation, as if there is disorder in President Trump's White House that's going to affect the average American. Why wouldn't they have just written a headline that stated John Kelley might be leaving, or given us the name of the person that might be taking the roll?
I dug ten pages deep into ultra-biased Google searching past headlines for Obama replacing Chiefs of Staff. Most of the sites dealt with Trump, but what I did find merely stated:
“McDonough no stranger to Obama inner circle”
“Obama’s Chief of Staff Pick Is Said to Be Down to 2”
“Obama welcomes new military chief replacing Mullen”
Obama makes it official: Rahm resigns:”
The last one was particularly touching as it included a picture of Obama and Emanuel hugging.
As you see the media spins the news to cause negativity if they don't like the President, as is their case with Trump, or positively, ala Barack Hussein Obama. (Did you notice what I did there?)
Like a drum beat, mainstream media keeps pounding the same negative mantra about Trump over and over, until eventually some people begin to believe something that might not be true. Fake News.
To paraphrase a meme for those writers that spin news: Trump’ a billionaire president and you’re sitting at a computer throwing a tantrum.
I had the occasion to watch the funeral procession of former President George. H.W. Bush upon the bodies' arrival to Washington DC. The pomp and circumstance, the majesty of all that is good about America, was on full display for President Bush's service, the last president of the Greatest Generation.
It's hard to watch without a lump forming in your throat, a spectacle comparable to the grandeur of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier or the Lincoln Memorial. The weather was magnificent, just ahead of a cold front’s arrival. The senior Mr. Bush's advent to the Capitol Rotunda, where he would lie in state, was near dusk, displaying a blue, yellow, and pink sky that capped off the stateliness of the ceremony.
As a president, it could arguably be said he ranked somewhere between average and a little above average. That's not to confuse the fact that George H.W. Bush was a great American, worthy of our highest respect. He was a naval warrior, Ambassador, Director of the CIA, Vice President, President, and father of a President, certainly a resume of a great American.
When considering the best presidents, Mr. Bush does not come immediately to mind. I voted for him twice, but recall wishing I had a little better candidate the second time. He just didn't compare to Reagan. Had Ross Perot not run that year, Mr. Bush might have won a second term, possibly saving us from the exploits and abuses ushered in with the Clinton's. Sadly, we will never know, and I feel a sense of loss for America. I believe we were tarnished somewhat for Mr. Bush not being given a second term.
History will be kinder to Mr. Bush than the American voters were, although to hear the media talk about him now, one would have thought he was the second coming of Abe Lincoln. If so, why didn't more people vote for him the second time? Where were those accolades in 1993, instead of the media mantra of "Read My Lips?"
Of course, his bereaved family was there, including our 43rd president, George W. Bush,brothers Neil, Jeb, and Marvin, as well as daughter, Dorothy. Until Mr. Bush passed, I didn't know he and his wife, Barbara, had lost a child. Three-year-old Robin Bush passed away of leukemia in 1953. The people that can recover from the depths of that kind of tragedy, and go on to greater things, surely should have the admiration and respect of us all.
Evidently having nothing better to do, our "esteemed" Congress decided to take the week off so that they could be part of the historical ceremony. Well, I guess that is one way to get them to stop spending our money, even if we had to endure McConnell, Ryan, Pelosi, and Schumer hamming it up.
I also noticed the Senate sent a beautiful rose bouquet, more than likely courtesy of the American taxpayer. I surmise the other branches did likewise. Think about that - when you go to a wake, the ribbon on the floral arrangement usually states the relationship, such as "dad,"" mom,"" brother," etc., paid by a private entity. But the various governmental bodies stick their name on it and send us the bill.
As I watched though, I became aware of what was not being represented at this American ceremony. Where was our current president - the man we elected to run our country, President Donald Trump and his wife, Melania? Vice President Mike Pence was there, and delivered an eloquent message. But no Trump. While you and I are not privy to the details, am I the only one that got the feeling the Trumps possibly might have felt unwanted?
Mr. Trump thoughtfully ordered Air Force One to transport Mr. Bush's body between Washington DC and Texas. Yet, the Trumps arrived three hours later, by themselves, and left in short order. I didn't see anyone talk to them. Trump was also not invited to speak.
Given the acrimony, lunacy, and national embarrassment that was the John McCain funeral spectacle back in August, our president might have uncharacteristically backed off in respect to the Bush family, even though President Bush himself formally invited Trump to the funeral.
Did I miss a memo that the President of the United States needs a formal invitation to anything? Who doesn't want the leader of the free world saying a few words at their funeral? I'd even settle with Barack Obama.
Maybe I'm just guilty of yet another Trumpism, but in my mind, Trump's silence spoke volumes. To omit him only reinforces the "Swamp Legacy."