Is There, Really, A Case For Impeachment?

The question keeps coming up about whether a president can be charged, or maybe even be investigated, while in office.

The Constitution has clear instructions on what to do if a president is removed based upon conviction of certain crimes, which could not happen without such an investigation being held and charges being filed.

Article II Section 4 of the Constitution of the United States reads:

 

Article 2 – The Executive Branch
Section 4 – Disqualification

The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

 

Bribery and other high Crimes and Misdemeanor charges are no doubt already forthcoming from the Mueller staff based upon everything we have already seen, especially the developments from this last week.

Mueller is now up to 192 indictment charges, nearly thirty people and three companies are among those charged already and the indictments clearly indicate charges against more as yet unnamed conspirators coming soon.

Roger Stone openly admitted that not only was he likely the unnamed “U.S. Person” serving as the conduit between a Russian operative and the President’s campaign but that the only person on that campaign he had contact with during that time was Donald Trump.   Thus, openly confessing live on CNN not only his own guilt but that of President Trump.

 

According to the indictment: “The Conspirators, posting as Guccifer 2.0, also communicated with U.S. persons about the release of stolen documents. On or about August 15, 2016, the Conspirators, posing as Guccifer 2.0, wrote to a person who was in regular contact with senior members of the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump, “thank u for writing back…”

“In initially denying that this passage referred to him, Stone stepped in it, bigly. He told CNN (emphasis mine) that he didn’t think he was the unnamed person in the indictment because, ‘My contact with the campaign in 2016 was Donald Trump. I was not in regular contact with campaign officials.'”

And then, “I think I probably am the person referred to,” he said on CNN’s Cuomo Prime Time.

 

The Mueller investigation has already documented quite a few different ways the Russians were funneling money to the Trump campaign, including through the NRA, so bribery has easily been established.

Each of these by itself is grounds for impeachment and conviction, which would then invalidate the placement of the entire administration under the Constitutional article referenced above.

Now, after the Helsinki Summit, we’re hearing talk of Treason.

Under Article III, Section 3, of the Constitution, any person who levies war against the United States or adheres to its enemies by giving them Aid and Comfort has committed treason within the meaning of the Constitution. The term aid and comfort refers to any act that manifests a betrayal of allegiance to the United States, such as furnishing enemies with arms, troops, transportation, shelter, or classified information. If a subversive act has any tendency to weaken the power of the United States to attack or resist its enemies, aid and comfort has been given.

However, the Treason Clause applies only to disloyal acts committed during times of war. Acts of dis-loyalty during peacetime are not considered treasonous under the Constitution. Nor do acts of Espionage committed on behalf of an ally constitute treason.

It is also important to note that under Article III a person can levy war against the United States without the use of arms, weapons, or military equipment.

In 2012, the Pentagon concluded that computer sabotage by another country could constitute an act of war.

 

The officials emphasize, however, that not every attack would lead to retaliation. Such a cyber attack would have to be so serious it would threaten American lives, commerce, infrastructure or worse, and there would have to be indisputable evidence leading to the nation state involved.

 

Saundra McDavid, Faculty Member of School of Business at American Military University, explains:

Actions that would qualify as acts of war are 1) the disruption or destruction of a nation’s financial institutions and nuclear command and control systems, and 2) computer-induced failures of power grids, transportation networks or financial systems that might result in physical damage or economic disruption of Department of Defense (DoD) operations. These events would rise to the level of cyber attacks that could prompt a declaration of war.

We have linked the cyber attack to Russia, both through social engineering, through hacking efforts against the DNC and Clinton campaign, through manipulation of our voting machines, and our voter registration databases.

We have established links for the funding of it through the NRA.

We have linked both the Russian operatives and the the NRA operatives to the Trump campaign and directly to the President through Roger Stone, at the very least.

The result of these actions is the destruction of American environmental protections by Trump appointed EPA chief Scott Pruitt.

The near complete undoing of Civil Rights by Jeff Sessions and Betsy DeVos in the Justice and Education departments respectively.

The stoking of racial and religious hate crimes by the President himself.

The threat of abandoning our allies in the United Nations along with the agreement to pull back from North Korea leaving all the former territories of the U.S.S. R. unprotected and ripe for re absorption by Putin’s Russia.

Starting trade wars that are detrimental to American farmers and businesses, and our allies, but beneficial to Russia who will fill the gap in product loss on the international markets caused by the tariff wars.

Trump is dismantling our government from the top of every organization downward.   He is destroying long standing economic alliances.   He is putting American jobs at risk while claiming the corporate profits are rising.  He is putting American lives at risk by removing environmental protections of them and stoking violent hate crimes.  His administration is committing crimes against humanity at our southern border, by actively abducting and trafficking in immigrant children while extorting their families for political purposes.

No matter what issue is raised about this president, and his administration, it all boils down simply.

 

We need to remember that we are fighting against a small group of kleptocrats put in power by an adversarial government with the purposes of dismantling America’s democracy and its international influence, and they are using willful ignorance, racism, misogyny, religious bigotry, and divisive partisan politics to accomplish it.

 

When viewed in that light, every single thing he has done, and everything others are doing to defend him, makes perfect sense.

The president of the United States accepted bribes from a hostile foreign government and conspired to assume power and put that government’s interests in advance of Americans to the determent of American lives.

The attack on our elections was an act of war directly resulting in the disruption or destruction of a nation’s financial institutions and nuclear command and control systems and financial systems that might result in physical damage or economic disruption of Department of Defense (DoD) operations.

It has threatened American lives, commerce, infrastructure and worse, and there is indisputable evidence leading to the nation state involved

This is treason.

This is every single issue the founders said could individually result in not only the removal of the President, but also his Vice President and every civil service member of his administration.    This should invalidate any appointments or laws executive orders issued by such a president as well.

Any member of congress who, knowing all of these things, continues to obstruct Mueller’s investigation is just as guilty as those already convicted of these acts.

There will be pressure, very soon, from Republicans on Trump to resign, as Nixon did, to prevent impeachment.  If this happens, and the investigation stalls as a result, the rest of the Trump administration and cabinet will be allowed to remain in place.

There is enough evidence already to impeach and remove them all.

Barring that, absolutely no further appointments should be confirmed until the investigation has completed, especially not life long judicial appointments.

“…On Many Sides…”

Back in 2015, Donald Trump spoke about the Black Lives Matter protests in Ferguson and Baltimore:

“I saw them with hate coming down the street last week talking about cops and police, and what should be done to them. And that was not good. And I think it’s a disgrace that they’re getting away with it.”

This statement was brought about by his fear and hatred of people of Color — and the White people that ally with them — attempting to stand up and speak out for reform of systemic injustice, police brutality, imbalanced judicial punishments, and denial of both human and Constitutional rights of entire segments of the population by civil servants.

Militias from all over the country came to make sure that “those people” didn’t get out of hand. Police attacked them aggressively, immediately.

Mr. Trump said nothing to condemn the violent response by both citizens and police to the gathering of protesters in those situations.

In January, one week after taking office as the Republican President, his new administration put up their official White House web site. On their page titled “Standing Up for Our Law Enforcement Community,” they included this statement:

“Our job is not to make life more comfortable for the rioter, the looter, or the violent disrupter.”

In the short time since, we’ve watched his Department of Justice and Department of Education whitewash over half a century of civil rights protections from our governmental structure, and heard him tell police to be more violent with their arrests of “those people.”

Now yesterday, in the midst of a gathering of people armed with both torches and weapons, angrily descending on a city not to defend their human or Constitutional rights, but their privilege to memorialize in public spaces idols to treasonous leaders in a movement to overthrow the government of our nation to retain the right to oppress and literally own other humans as chattel slaves.

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides, on many sides.”

Trump said this during a short statement from his private golf club in New Jersey regarding the domestic terrorism events in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Worse, he then visibly retreated when asked to specifically condemn the violence perpetrated by the White Nationalists as well as the injuries and death created by a domestic terrorist on their behalf.

With his limited statement, his retreat, and the context of his previous statements and actions, he has set the stage for a second civil war.

He has given the political legitimacy of the Presidential Office’s consent to the false equivalency of violent KKK gatherings — David Duke was in attendance in Charlottesville and praising Trump’s support of their cause — with protest against oppression due to racial and religious bigotry.

This is how his message was received by those White Supremacists on one of their leading national websites:

“Trump comments were good. He didn’t attack us. He just said the nation should come together. Nothing specific against us.

He said that we need to study why people are so angry, and implied that there was hate…on both sides!

So he implied the antifa are haters.

There was virtually no counter-signaling of us at all.

He said he loves us all.

Also refused to answer a question about White Nationalists supporting him.

No condemnation at all.

When asked to condemn, he just walked out of the room.

Really, really good.”

All of this makes him a greater threat to the safety and security of every person on United States soil than any radical extremist from the Middle Eastern nations or fascist North Korean dictator. The fact that he continues to intentionally escalate those threats as well, just makes him even more dangerous to us all.

The only important question that remains is do you stand with the President and his support of reviving the “Lost Cause” or do you stand with your fellow citizens against an assault on human and Constitutional rights from the Oval Office?

The Lost Cause is the name commonly given to a literary and intellectual movement that sought to reconcile the traditional Southern white society to the defeat of the Confederate States of America in the Civil War.  White Southerners sought consolation in attributing their loss to factors beyond their control and to betrayals of their heroes and cause.  Those who contributed to the movement tended to portray the Confederacy’s cause as noble and most of the Confederacy’s leaders as exemplars of old-fashioned chivalry defeated by the Union armies not through superior military skill, but by overwhelming force.  They also tended to condemn Reconstruction.

As long as those of you on the conservative right continue to ignore — or worse, support and defend — their religiously intolerant White Nationalist, Neo-Nazi, racist extremists committing hate crimes and acts of domestic terrorism, there is no legitimacy to the designator of “alternate” for the “Alt-Right.”

A wholesale embrace of this behavior is the path the Republican President decided was necessary to “Make America Great Again [For White People].”

We should strip away the deflection of the rebranding efforts and expose these violent extremists for exactly what they are; which is nothing more or less than modern Republicans.

I have no idea if you identify as Republican or not, conservative or not.

I’m just stating the fact that if you support them at all, you’re allowing them to speak for you. If you don’t approve of their messaging and methods, denounce it and stop supporting them.

Anyone who supports a party whose entire platform and path to success is a wholesale embrace of this ideology, will find they’re going to be lumped into it.

This is the modern Republican party.

Any conservatives that don’t agree with it, need to either form a new party to distinguish themselves or openly and vehemently denounce these extremists and work to purge them, their rhetoric, and their White Nationalist, Christian theocracy policies and legislation from their party.

This is not a fringe element.

This is the Republican party leadership.

This is Congress.

This is the Republican White House administration and the close inner circle of trusted advisors.

This is the President of the United States.

Farewell; Welcome; Thank You Both

 

Yes, that is right.

Thank you to both Barack Obama and Donald Trump.

Those of you that have been following this blog or the Facebook discussion page for any length of time might find the latter inclusion confusing.

Thank you Mr. Obama for modeling who we are capable of becoming and what we are capable of accomplishing.    Thank you Mr. Trump for proving who we still are and how far we have yet to go.

Last night, President Barack Obama offered his “farewell address” although it was much more a State of the Union address than a farewell.    While he is leaving the office of the Presidency, it is clear he is not leaving the political arena and will remain active striving for progressive change in our nation.

So, in light of your absolutely incredible amount of progressive reform and accomplishments as President over the last eight years despite a congressional opposition dedicated to obstructing his every action even when doing so would be detrimental to their own constituents of voters, Thank you, good sir.

While I do not agree with everything you have done, I approve and appreciate the majority of it.   You have been one of the most successful Presidents our country has ever elected.

Here is a list of hundreds of President Obama’s accomplishments as President. Every one of them has a citation, so no one can dismiss them out of hand.

As part of his closing, President Obama said,

“I am asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about change – but in yours.”

I would like to take the opportunity to respond:

Thank you, sir, for your service, offered at all times with grace and dignity far above and beyond our highest expectations, and despite the overt racism directed at both you and your family.   You lead by example and modeled the behavior and ideals we should all hold dear in this nation.  
I deeply regret that as citizens we have failed you, as far too many of us strayed from the path you laid out for us and refused to learn from your example.

Having said that, I’d like to shift now to offering my thanks and undying gratitude to President-Elect Donald Trump as he prepares to assume the responsibilities and duties of the office of the President of the United States.

Thank you, Mr. Trump, for opening our eyes and launching what history will recognize hopefully as the Second Civil Rights Movement of the United States, and not the Second American Civil War or World War III.

Until your campaign, many people actually thought we were living in a post-racial, religiously tolerant, gender equal society. with only some odd, old, hold-out fringe elements still causing some friction.

Now thanks to your campaign we know beyond a doubt that there is still far too much to be done and no time to waste.

The use of dog whistle rhetoric throughout the campaign cycle calling out to the White Supremacists, Neo-Nazis, Sovereign Citizens, and just plain willfully ignorant that were hiding among us, showed us that despite our reform efforts racism and bigotry still thrive hidden just below the surface in the hearts and minds of far too many.

As a result of your Anti-Muslim rhetoric and embrace of legalized religious intolerance and discrimination of non-Christians which have stoked a marked increase of violent hate crimes, we now know that no amount of social justice reform or new laws will have any lasting affect upon our society until the laws created are enforced fairly and equally in a manner that doesn’t provide the illusion of a progress that is not enforced in reality.

Your classless and distasteful public mockery of Pulitzer Prize winning investigative journalist Serge F. Kovaleski‘s physical disability, shows we must prepare for the fact that those with a physical or mental disability will be at greater risk under your administration from discriminatory policies, public abuse, disregard, and disenfranchisement than at any point in my lifetime.

The abundant history of your misogyny as well as the more recent ones from you throughout the last year and a half have proven that gender equality is still far from being achieved or even desired, especially in the eyes of the Republican party leadership and members.  In fact, we now know our next President is not only an advocate of the American rape culture but an active participant thanks to your recorded confession of workplace sexual assault.

Your assertion in that recorded confession that:

“When you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything.”

And:

“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and wouldn’t lose any voters, ok? It’s, like, incredible.”

have shown that Affluenza is not a buzzword, but a real affliction that we must strive to eradicate if equality of justice is ever to be an attainable goal.

Your call to Russian hackers to directly attack your own political rivals and embrace of their actions once done shows how vulnerable our election process is to outside foreign influence.

The pandering throughout your campaign to the “alt-right” agenda of racism and white nationalism and Neo-Nazi beliefs, your constant propagation of their messages and fabricated fake news stories through social media, speeches and interviews, and your appointment of one of their media leaders, Steve Bannon, to your transition team and White House administration have clearly exposed how dangerously widespread and prevalent subversive racism really still is in our society.

The win you achieved through the Electoral College, despite having lost the election by a greater margin of votes than any President in history, has exposed the inherent flaws and deeply entrenched racism within the system that we had been led to believe was designed to prevent a candidate like you from ascending to the Presidency.  Thank you for exposing these flaws and showing us what needs to be addressed to start adjusting the allocation so that people of color aren’t discredited as 3/5 of a vote in future elections.

I also need to thank you for demonstrating to everyone that civility, decorum, and human decency are qualities reviled by a significant segment of our population.   For teaching our young children that the path to success, fame, fortune, and power is best achieved through lies, deceit, manipulation, belligerence, personal attacks, greed, selfishness, and the emotional fortitude of an elementary school bully.

Thank you for showing us just how fragile the small level of democracy in our Democratic Republic truly is and for galvanizing us to begin fixing these flaws that too many were not even aware were there.

So finally, to close and recap, Thank you President Obama for using your time in office to show us who we can and should be — and thank you, President Elect Trump for holding up the mirror and showing us who we still are and what is really left to be done.

Now it is time to get started.

By exposing all of this to those that believed we had actually made progress on many of these issues over the last half century,  Mr. Trump may have unwittingly and inadvertently done more for the civil rights of America before even being sworn in as president than any single person since Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr died.

It is time for us to answer President Obama’s farewell request — that we believe in our ability to change.  And utilize it.

Don’t wait.  Start now.  Today.

Rally.  Protest.  Call and write your governmental representatives.  Get everyone who is eligible registered and eager to VOTE.  Be informed.  Be involved.  Donate to or help campaign for candidates that support your values and represent your concerns on the issues at hand.  Cast a ballot on every issue and for every office at ever opportunity for each city, county, state, and national level.

 

Trump Advice — If You Don’t Want To Be Sexually Harassed, Go Teach Kindergarten.

Normally, I wouldn’t care what a child of a governmental candidate had to say, but when that child is a campaign surrogate speaking for the candidate, you have to give honest consideration to their words.

When they speak to family values, social values, and workplace ethics you have to know that not only are they conveying the campaign mentality but the value structure under which they were raised.

With that in mind, we can better evaluate all the nuance presented by Donald Trump, Jr., when he says:

“If you can’t handle some of the basic stuff that’s become a problem in the workforce today, then you don’t belong in the workforce. Like, you should go maybe teach kindergarten. I think it’s a respectable position.”

What he’s telling us here is that in his work environment women shouldn’t only expect sexual harassment, they should accept it as part of their daily lives.

He is telling women that if they don’t want to be regularly victimized at the workplace that the only way to avoid it would be to work with pre-adolescent children.

This mirrors what his father, Presidential candidate Donald J. Trump has said regarding his own daughter, the younger Donald’s sister, Ivanka and her own acceptance of that mentality.

Donald Trump once said that if Ivanka Trump were sexually harassed, he’d expect her to find another job. But Ivanka Trump herself — who markets herself as a guru for women in the workplace, celebrating “women who work” — has written that when it comes to sexual harassment, women sometimes just need to lighten up.

This is a remarkable stance considering their own mother’s allegations of sexual assault against their father.

If this is how much concern the man who would be king has for his own family, imagine how little he will care for yours