Americans: when you are done laughing, screaming and crying…
It’s hard to think of a more stupid course of conduct than Donald Trump and his minions have taken with respect to “the Russians.” You would think that whatever happened in the campaign, a president-elect, and then president, would have the sense to establish an arm’s length or more distance from foreign powers, especially from traditional rivals, for the sake of protocol if nothing else.
You don’t have to — and shouldn’t — buy into the neoconservative and “humanitarian interventionist” arguments in favor of a Cold War II with Russia to understand the caution that is due in US dealings with not only Vladimir Putin and his government, but the whole crowd of oligarchs and mafiosi upon whose shoulders Putin rose to power. If we are to be told as complete and truthful a story as we are owed, that story has get into Donald Trump’s direct and indirect ties with the Russian and Eastern European underworld and its diaspora as well as his and his surrogates’ dealings with the Russian government. The point of all that would not be to negate Trump’s campaign call for better relations with Russia, let alone get onto a war footing with that vast and well armed but impoverished country. It’s to guard US interests and institutions.
We are not talking about treason here. We are talking about major conflicts of interest, gross disloyalty and a cover-up as serious as the one that got Richard Nixon run out of the White House. Whether there were impeachable offenses is ultimately a matter for Republicans to decide, even if Democrats unanimously say that there were. Moreover, whether the United States would be very well served by the religious rightist Mr. Pence taking over the presidency from Mr. Trump isn’t an easy question to answer.
Eyes on the prize, Americans! There is an immediate preliminary battle in which many lives hang in the balance. The Republicans plan to cancel health care for some 24 million Americans, make it more expensive for most of the rest of the nation, and give the ultra-rich a $300 billion tax cut. That move can be defeated in the Senate, but only by massive popular demand.
Eyes on the prize, Democrats! Once our primary battles are over, we need to unite in 2018 and drive the Republicans out of control of the House of Representatives. This year and next we need to replenish our roster of presidential possibilities by electing many new Democratic governors and senators.
Eyes on the prize, Panamanian and US dual citizens! You may consider events in the USA to be far away and irrelevant to your life, but what Donald Trump is doing risks the safety and economy of the whole world, including trade-dependent Panama. If you have a US passport you should also have and use a US voter registration.
Nobody gets America out of this mess except ourselves.
Let the chips fall
Our comptroller general and high court magistrates aren’t chopping away at the Odebrecht scandal and other sordid legacies that haunt our daily headlines. Attorney General Kenia Porcell may or may not be, but she has little to show so far.
Nothing happening here? It may happen that the pile of chips will end up including the public lives of those who refused to chop when it was their duty.
Bear in mind…
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