What If We Told Our Story Backwards, Starting With: “Donald Trump Is A Corrupt Traitor”?

If I had a ranch, I’d bet it: we will establish beyond all doubt that Donald Trump did not “win” the 2016 election. It was STOLEN for him in large part by Russia who OWN Trump to the tune of $422 million or so — a loan that’s about to come due. We know Trump owes someone — and whoever it is, it poses an existential threat to our democracy. But, our problem’s bigger than that — bigger than just Trump. We need to know who the whole Republican Party is indebted to. We need to know how they thought they could get away with pulling off a coup d’etat.

That’s where this story will land and IS landing: the Republican Party, recognizing they faced demographic and therefore political extinction, hitched their wagon to Donald Trump despite the fact that (they knew) he was compromised, owned flat out by Russian military intelligence. If we think of what we’re experiencing as a story rather than real life, there’s going to be an ending where questions get answered and most of the loose ends get neatly tied. The villains of the piece will get fingered. Most will get punished as they deserve. A few will seem to get away but a further tidying up as the credits roll will tell us that they, too, came to terrible ends.

On that day — when our story gets fully revealed — our news media will stand astride this monster like THEY brought it down. Don’t be fooled. We The People will have saved ourselves from doom. We’ll have done it despite our news media making it nearly impossible — because they never saw the ending coming.

Even with all we already know about how Russia “influenced” the 2016 — that’s according to the news media’s own reporting — our news media still persists in saying that Donald Trump “won” election. No, those are mutually exclusive propositions. A foreign country can’t legally “influence” ANY American election. The whole idea that Russia “influenced” our election should send shockwaves and flares rumbling and flying in every direction.

There’s a famous and apocryphal story from the 2016 GOP convention. Current GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy walks into a meeting of Republican muckety-mucks and announces “There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump”. Kevin was so convinced, he threw in a “Swear to God”. “House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) immediately interjected, stopping the conversation from further exploring McCarthy’s assertion, and swore the Republicans present to secrecy.”

“No leaks,” the Speaker famously replied, “This is how we know we’re a real family here.”

The correct response should have been “Whaaaaat? Kevin, dude — are you SURE about this?”

“Swear to God,” says Kevin.

“Somebody — quick — get the FBI on the phone,” Paul should have said, “We have a patriotic duty here as citizens and leaders”.

They didn’t.

We know why. Let me repeat that WE KNOW WHY. We KNOW THE ENDING.

Donald Trump and the Republican Party have betrayed America, betrayed We The People and betrayed everything we stand for. They’ve betrayed our future and our children’s future. These are true now — as our news media finally feels secure enough to report them — as when the crimes were being freshly committed. Meaning — the Republicans in that room with Kevin McCarthy and Paul Ryan were as guilty THEN of committing criminal acts as they will be on the day the news media finally reports the fact.

The only problem — four years have elapsed between the act and the reporting of it as a crime. The fact was reported on in May 2017, nearly a year after it happened. That is, a year after it became a KNOWN fact. It was a FACT long before that. In other words — a crime was being committed long before anyone recognized that fact. It doesn’t change the fact that a crime was being committed. Our lack of knowledge of that crime doesn’t excuse the crime.

Harold Pinter’s play (and then feature film) “Betrayal” literally tells its story backwards — in reverse chronology. It’s about how an affair destroys a relationship. The story begins with the aftermath of the destroyed relationship. We see the wreckage. Then we march backward through time, scene by scene. Whereas normal storytelling relies on adding information learned in the previous scene, in “Betrayal”, we see instead where that information came from. At the end, we see the moment when the affair began — the spark that preceded the affair — and how that spark smoldered then suddenly ignited a blaze that burned through everything.

What if we told the Donald Trump Destroyed America story that same way? What if our news media began with all the facts laid out neatly then deconstructed the story, scene-by-scene, detail-by-detail back to the very moment (or moments) where this crisis really began. For one thing, we’d get to see the story in context — in its proper context. We’d understand from that context that Donald Trump is not (and never was, as the news media kept reporting) a “different kind of POTUS”. In fact, he’s always been a criminal, guilty of laundering Russian mob money in exchange for solvency.

He’s also guilty of tax fraud and election fraud and treason.

We don’t have our ending yet. It’s our saving grace. It’s still to be written. But our ending will include all those facts because they ARE facts. Donald Trump and, now, the entire Republican Party are guilty of treason. The sooner our news media starts reporting these facts AS FACTS — as established parts of the narrative — the sooner we’ll stop this charade of an election. The sooner we’ll start solving our problem instead of exacerbating it.

Stealing Elections For Dummies

We The People have two problems facing us as we careen toward this election. Problem number one: The Republican Party is doing everything it can — including commit treason — to hold onto the power they stole in the last election.

Problem number two: our news media — even while reporting that Trump and the GOP are openly cheating in order to win — behave as if cheating to win and winning without cheating are the exact same thing.

No, they are not. The rule of law says cheating can NEVER equal winning. Now, the rule of law isn’t going to enforce itself. WE have to do that. But we can’t enforce the rule of law if we refuse to observe even its most basic tenets — like, say, you can’t cheat in order to win. If the press sat down to a card game and could never win because the person they were playing with cheated not only relentless but openly, they’d say something eventually. But, with Donald Trump, even if they do say something, they immediately assume that “Oh well, it’s Trump — cheating is “what it is”.

No, it’s NOT.

When republicans gerrymandered voting districts, they did it with the specific purpose of denying the majority their voice. That’s the whole point of gerrymandering. It’s to give a minority of voters political power far beyond what it should be entitled to. The point is, literally, to circumvent the will of the people. Do you think Republicans would have to gerrymander districts if they thought they could win them on the strength of their ideas?

It’s not just that Republicans fear Democratic voters. It goes deeper — beneath the labels to actual philosophy. Republicans fear the equality under the rule of law that Democrats want. They want special treatment under the rule of law — the same special treatment they’ve gotten up till now — at the expense of people of color, Black people especially.

Republicans, being conservative, want to “conserve” what is. Their name says it all. The future, in their minds, should be exactly the same as the present. The present, to them, already represents too much compromise with the future. They want to slow or stop any future evolution of our thinking and ways of doing things. Innovation is conservatism’s enemy. It has to be. All innovation causes change and change is anathema to conservatism.

If Republicans were honest, they’d campaign on a platform that promised to take America back to the 50’s — the 1850’s — back when being a voter meant being a white, Christian, landowning male. But then, if they did that, who’d vote for them?

There’s the rub. That’s why Republicans gerrymander and suppress Democratic voters and lie about their intentions. The irony is, Republicans don’t even want to govern, they want to prove that government is bad. So they govern badly — like a kid who doesn’t want to do their chores so they do them all the worst way they can. If the voting public knew what Republicans really wanted to do to the country — in fact, it’s exactly what they’re doing right now — they’d rise up in a tidal wave of anger, resentment and outrage that would turn Republicans out of power forever.

Republicans don’t need a book teaching them how to cheat. They’ve been doing it out of necessity for more than a generation now. The RW money (the Kochs, the Mercers) saw way back that America’s diversifying demographics spelled political doom for them and so set out to stop it from happening. They charged Mitch McConnell with the task of hijacking the judiciary — first, by denying Barack Obama the lifetime appointments to the federal bench to which he (and We The People) were entitled (via a thing called an “election”), then by filling the federal bench with unqualified extremists once Donald Trump had stolen power.

Partnering with Russia may not have originated inside the Republican Party, but even when they knew Russia was actively working to make Donald Trump president, they did nothing to stop it. In fact, they continued working with Russians. Mitch McConnell, for instance, refused to let Barack Obama inform us in September 2016 that Russia was actively trying to make Trump potus. He twisted every arm he had to to get sanctions lifted so that Oleg Deripaska could drop $400 million into a Russian aluminum factory in Western Kentucky. Those sanctions were put in place because of Deripaska’s role in subverting the 2016 election.

No, Republicans know perfectly well not just how to steal elections, but to steal elections via treason. And it IS treason because Russia is actively engaged in a cyber war against us — a war they envisioned years ago. Just because they haven’t fired a bomb or bullet at us doesn’t mean it isn’t a war. Russia could shut down our power grid today (they absolutely could!) and we’d sue for peace — the losers — tomorrow.

War is war is war. And anyone who thinks you need bombs and bullets to win a war will lose every war they ever fight going forward.

It’s our news media that needs to read this book. They need to see cheating for what it is — CHEATING — and not as some odd variant on “winning”.

Cheating is cheating is cheating. It can never be winning. As Republicans are fond of saying “elections have consequences”.

Point taken. And stolen elections have even worse consequences.

It’s Not Hyperbole: Donald Trump Is Not Now Nor Has He Ever Been Legitimate President Of The United States

Let’s start with this understanding — even in the world of beauty pageants, there are rules. There are laws even — and cheating even in something as trivial as a “who’s prettier?” contest — carries actual legal peril (beyond just losing a wardrobe department crown). Not that it ever stopped Donald Trump.

Our problem is so simple. We have only two political parties. They no longer want to live in (or govern) the same country. The Democrats want to live in this country. Republicans want to live in that country instead.

In this country, where the Democrats want to live, democracy rules. So do diversity, fairness and a level playing field. In that country, the one Republicans want to call home, there is no level playing field, there are just fields where the rest of us are meant to work our lives away for no money. It’s not a coincidence that during the Trump presidency, the rich have gotten exponentially richer. It’s also not a coincidence that the Covid-19 pandemic made the richest of the richer even richer still.

In pursuit of greed, The GOP sold out to the Koch Brothers & the Mercers then Donald Trump and his Russian Oligarch Pals (led by Vlad Putin). So long as they get richer and hold onto power, nothing else matters to Mitch McConnell and what remains of the GOP. Do ya suppose there’s a reason Republicans – and only Republicans – have worked so hard to suppress investigations into what happened during election 2016 and then lie about what those investigations uncovered? Donald Trump keeps projecting what happened. Why don’t we listen to him?

The word Trump keeps floating out there like a beach ball on a hitting T is “illegitimate”. He fears the world perceives his presidency as illegitimate. Why would that be, I wonder?

Sociopath though he is, Trump still knows enough to understand he can never stop being POTUS. The second he ceases to be protected by that ludicrous DoJ rules that says “sitting presidents can’t be indicted”, he WILL be indicted and he knows it. At the very least, Trump will go from being “unindicted co-conspirator number one” in the court case that sent Michael Cohen to prison to being INDICTED co-conspirator number one. Why wouldn’t he?

And — Trump knows this too — that first indictment will set off an explosion of falling dominoes across a variety of jurisdictions. Trump and his family and their businesses will get sued by virtually everyone. And law enforcement (now under the Rule Of Law again) will come after him for everything he’s done. They’ll have to because that’s what the Rule Of Law says they MUST do.

The Rule Of Law says Donald Trump has never been President of the United States. It can PROVE Donald Trump has never been POTUS. It has remedies, too.

An illegitimate POTUS never had the authority to nominate anyone for anything. It’s like any of us trying to nominate the next pope. We won’t be getting into that room actually. We don’t have the authority to be there. And if we walked in the door and voted anyway? Do you think they’d count it just cos we voted?

No.

And if we brought a gang with us (including our pal Vladimir) and took over the voting — cheating in myriad obvious ways to get a result that looks suspiciously wrong (as in the majority of bishops there did not vote the way the vote came out) — do you think that vote would stand up to any sort of historical smell test?

No, it would not.

Retrospect will not be kind to us. We have stood by for three years while a soft coup d’etat runs roughshod over and dismantles everything we thought we were. Our news media has convinced us that crimes committed against us — especially out in the open — can’t possibly be crimes. That’s it. That’s the logic.

And as faulty on its surface as that is, we need to see Donald Trump’s very legitimacy as faulty. The framing shouldn’t be “Donald Trump — an unusual potus — won an election so that’s just how it is”. It should be “Donald Trump is a traitor — working hand-in-glove with Vladimir Putin (and other foreign actors) — to circumvent the will of the American People — including his election and now re-election”.

This will matter “bigly” as Trump would put it (or “big league” — it’s so hard to decipher what that inarticulate shit gibbon is saying sometimes!) when we get to the prosecution and punishment phases of what’s to come. if the receipts prove that, in fact, Donald Trump’s election was fraudulent, then we need to consider the ripple effects of that fraud.

To go back to the beauty pageant — if I cheat to win and my cheating gets discovered? They ain’t letting me keep the crown or anything else that went with sweet victory. They’re taking it all back and kicking my lying ass to the curb — where it bloody well belongs. Car thieves (when caught) don’t get to keep the ride they stole. Even the movie “LaLaLand” had to give back the Oscar it thought it won (to “Moonlight”). The reason? The LEGITIMATE winner gets to keep the spoils.

At least, that’s how it’s supposed to be. That’s how it will be when the Rule Of Law becomes a “thing” again.

The Rule Of Law will insist that we prosecute everyone who violated it (especially if they were trying to undermine its very foundations). It will insist we do it fairly of course. And, if we find these people guilty? The Rule Of Law will insist that we punish them.

if we want to keep the Rule Of Law? We better do as it says.

And the Rule Of Law will insist that none of the judicial nominees Donald Trump nominated can remain on the federal benches they occupy — because Donald Trump never had the authority given him by We The People to nominate said judges. Stolen authority is not THE authority. Added bonus? Plenty of the judges Trump nominated lied repeatedly during their nomination hearings before the Senate. If they indeed committed perjury (boy, do we have receipts!), they can’t remain judges. We’ll impeach them — and they will be impeached.

We’ve traveled miles from where we began with the Trump saga. Imagine if, on the day Trump was sworn in, we’d been as vigilant about Trump, his corruption, his lies, his racism, his misogyny, his TREASON as we are now. Imagine if our news media had been capable of adding information so that their framing of Donald Trump constantly updated; we wouldn’t still be treating him like a “different kind of potus” as some of the news media still think of him. We’d be treating him like the treasonous, corrupt pretender he’s always been.

Yeah, I’m old enough to remember when saying Russia too loudly got eye rolls. When using the word “Traitor” got groans. When comparing Trump to Hitler ended the argument cos you went “there”. But “there”, it turns out, is where we all should have been.

Our choice is going to be incredibly simple. If we don’t void the results of election 2016 — if we allow criminals bent on undermining our democratic institutions to get away with it — we will be setting ourselves up for failure. It would be like letting racists get away with “Slavery, Part II”. Not outlawing slavery was a colossal mistake that will haunt the republic forever. We’re still fighting the Civil War. Make no mistake. It’s still a going concern.

And the same forces that betrayed us then for immoral reasons are betraying us now. They’ve never actually been down with representative democracy because people never want to vote for their ideas. They can’t grasp why no one else wants to live in the 50’s.

That’s the 1850’s.

If The Question Is “But, What Can We DO To Stop Trump?”, The Answer Is “Let’s Start By Agreeing: Donald Trump Was NEVER The “LEGITIMATE POTUS”

A schoolyard bully who steals your lunch money and claims it was always his, is wrong. Not just morally but factually. The lunch money was never his.

Same token — a person who cheats on their bar exam or pilot’s license isn’t actually a lawyer or a pilot. They never actually qualified for it and therefore never really had rights or privileges that were given them UNDER FALSE PRETENSE. Get that last part — the FALSE PRETENSE part? Stick a pin in it. We’re coming back.

The guy cutting you open may call himself a doctor — and the scalpel in his hand is horrifyingly real — but he is not, in fact, by our mutual agreement (because we have created standards for our mutual benefit and safety) that thing he’s calling himself — be it doctor, lawyer, pilot — or POTUS.

Now, I’m simply going by the Rule Of Law here — and, as always on this blog, I assume we’ll find a way back to a world where the Rule Of Law “is” again because the overwhelming majority of us prefer it that way. Maybe that’s why I remain hopeful (if uneasily so) — though Americans should have taken to the streets en masse many insults to human decency ago, there will be a point where even the most apolitical American gets up on his hind legs and says “STOP!”

The majority of Americans do not like being told what to do by “outsiders”. They love their creature comforts — a lot. They want simple lives, yes, but simple lives of comfort. Trump’s impact on this country is only just playing out in full-assed Technicolor. It’s been building to this from the day Russia stole the 2016 election for Trump.

We’re not talking about the Trumpanistas. They’re “never-wozzers” where Democracy is concerned. They’re a more malignant version of the 29% of Americans who still approved of Nixon on the day he resigned because of Watergate — the last Republican power grab that we managed to stop just in time. We’re talking about the 40% or so of Americans who never or rarely engage with politics.

These are the cynical ones — never instilled with civic pride because we just don’t teach it. Civic pride doesn’t instill itself, ya know. To a degree, their cynicism is understandable. Money has always had a louder voice and bigger vote. They got that. But, that was the whole point of “giving money the vote” — to further empower the money and further disempower the actual voter.

2018 began something — a very real awakening. The surge of women into politics will continue unabated because women finally cannot tolerate living in a male-dominated world. That won’t merely effect the sex of the people doing the legislating, it will effect how those people legislate. They’ll do it like women. They’ll do it more multi-laterally than unilaterally. In fact, it’ll be the rare decision that ever gets made unilaterally at all. Because women’s bodies are designed to bear children, they know in their atoms — no one can have or raise a child by themselves. They can try — and they might not die. But they absolutely will not thrive.

Women know a lot about legitimacy. I don’t mean as it pertains to kids with married parents, I mean how it pertains to who deserves what and who doesn’t. Women have had to fight damned hard to get a fraction of what men get in the marketplace — not because their ideas are worth less or their skills less — but because they’re women. Glass ceilings are completely illegitimate. They’re not a legitimate thing. They don’t represent a legitimate reason to exclude women and their talents from the game.

Legitimacy matters.

I believe women will refuse to accept Trumpism going forwards because they will have rejected it in their guts from the get-go. Trumpism is built on a gross, male lie — “I alone can fix it”. If I want to stick my dick somewhere, I’m sticking it there.

That’s not legitimate — except as a rape threat.

We must see EVERYTHING now in its totality. We cannot see all these isolated bits and pieces of the mosaic — Mitch McConnell denying Barack Obama all those lifetime federal judges especially the SCOTUS seat — Mitch McConnell refusing to let Obama tell us that Russia was all in to make Trump POTUS — Every Trumpian lie about Russia — Trump Tower Moscow — Every Republican lie about Russia including the fact that they’ve always known about (starting with “I think Putin Pays Rohrbacher & Trump”) — every time Trump has attached himself to Putin’s anus like a limpet to a shark — every sledgehammer blow to our system of government — we have to see every single corrupt shard as part of a gigantic corrupt whole: Treason.

People who commit TREASON to become President of The United States? They can’t BE President. They’ve already broken the main rule. Remember False Pretense? You cannot “win” the presidency of this country under it.

It’s a contradiction of terms therefore to say you’re president when, in fact, you are not.

Donald Trump did not clear the most basic hurdle of becoming LEGITIMATE POTUS. He did not win the presidency legitimately.

Once we make that the foundation — our starting point for all facts going forward — then first fact we have to acknowledge is Donald Trump is not now — nor has he ever been — the legitimate president. Not being the legitimate POTUS, he never had ANY of the rights, privileges or the authority to do what legitimate POTUSes do — create legislation, represent our country abroad, nominate judges.

I’m not authorized to make air traffic decisions. I might show up and claim I have the authority and even bring along powerful friends who agree with me — that I do. But I don’t — and clearly I’m not making air traffic decisions because I care about safety in the skies. I’m not sure why I’d lie about being an air traffic control person but I know exactly why I’d lie about cheating to become POTUS.

How can the victims of a crime — that’s what We The People are in this instance — be forced to endure a lifetime of the criminal getting away with it? Who says that has to happen — when we can prove how utterly criminal the criminal here is? An election result was stolen from us. That’s not an abstraction.

We The People voted for open-minded, progressive-leaning judges — that’s who the people WE THE MAJORITY voted for. We got fascists instead. That’s not our democracy working, that’s our democracy being hijacked.

We do NOT have to listen to hijackers. We do not have to do what they say or let them win. We can turn — right now — and look these criminals right in the face. They won’t meet our eyes — of course they can’t. They’re guilty little boys who’ve been caught out again. And this time we caught them doing something diabolically bad.

That’s why they’re fighting so hard to kill our democracy dead. If the Rule Of Law is still a thing? Every last Republican (okay — save, MAYBE a few) is going to prison for the rest of their lives. Traitors deserve nothing less.

What can we do to stop Trump & the Republican Party? Let’s start by calling them what they are — TRAITORS. Let’s also make it clear that we view 2016 as not an election but a crime scene. The election result needs to be inspected in far greater detail. We The People want the facts — as best we can reconstruct them.

We want to know what REALLY happened in 2016. If Trump — or ANY Republican — worked with Russia IN ANY WAY to facilitate Trump’s “win”, we cannot say that election was free or fair. Considering what we KNOW Russia was up to — and why?

Tossing the results of election 2016 is a big ask. But how else can we possibly proceed from a starting point of “DONALD TRUMP WAS NEVER LEGITIMATELY PRESIDENT”?

Why on earth would we insist on legitimizing what we know was treasonous? Who the hell could that possibly serve?

Oh, wait — I think I know…

We The People Want Our Stolen 2016 Election Result Back — And The Thieves Who Stole It Punished…

Caveat — We The People show up in sufficient numbers through the primaries (since Russia is now “voting” in them) and the general to overcome what’s sure to be massive Russian cheating on Donald Trump’s behalf and virtually every Republican gets shit-canned. Caveat #2 — A peaceful transfer of power happens.

Caveat #3 — The Rule Of Law becomes a “thing” again. We all agree to adhere to it. We all agree that no one is above the law and everyone gets treated equally by it. As we’ve learned the hard way, relying on people to follow norms might be a moral bridge too far for some of them. There must be significant change — both systemic and cultural.

We need to re-instill both respect for the Rule Of Law but also a sense of civic pride in ourselves. Democracy is incredibly hard to pull off successfully. It can’t be done by a lazy citizenry. Bad actors aren’t lazy. That’s the problem.

The rebuild of our political system and structures will start with reasserting the Rule Of Law. The Rule of Law will demand that we not hold every criminal accountable for what they’re doing now — but, also, for what they did in 2016 when they deliberately undermined the Rule of Law — tried to overthrow it in fact. Tried to murder it dead.

Okay — too melodramatic. The Republican Party stole the Rule of Law from us via an election result and want that election result back.

If we view election 2016 as a “crime scene” & the election’s results “stolen property” – making We The People the crime’s true victims – how will we return that “property” – the thing that was stolen – to US?

It seems profoundly “unfair” (to put it mildly) that the crime’s victims – us – would be forced to endure eternal victim-hood because there was “no way” to return to us what was stolen from us: the election results (minus Russia) that we actually voted for.

We, as a people, once accommodated slavers and slavery. It compromised our Constitution so severely that we fought a Civil War over it. We refused to deal with an INJUSTICE directly. It did not go away.  It lurked.

Just like Russia is lurking. 

Russia got what IT wanted from our election.  Think about that.  They ACTIVELY sought one result vs another – ACTIVELY engaged with our electoral process to MAKE THAT RESULT HAPPEN – and we are STILL arguing about whether the borscht is cold enough.  That’s how far past the event horizon of this black hole we may already be.  We think we’re swimming in a pond unvisited as yet by Russia.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

Before fully hitching his wagon to Moscow, Mitch McConnell – at the behest of his masters, the Kochs, the Mercers and all that RW money – set out to hijack the judiciary.  He denied Obama lots and lots of lifetime-appointed federal judges including a SCOTUS judge that was his right to have because WE THE PEOPLE VOTED FOR OBAMA.

See how Mitch was already standing in our way?  But, being greedy (and therefore stupid), Mitch was also getting serenaded by Russia.  Mitch has been taking Russian money into his campaign coffers forever – and Russian money comes with strings.  Lots and lots of strings. 

The Russians know how to use greed and sex to lure stupid, greedy Americans into compromising positions.  Whether or not Putin has video of Trump watching hookers piss on the Moscow hotel room bed where the Obamas slept – while he shouted the “n-word” – makes no difference.  The fact that the threat even exists – and Trump can’t defend himself – speaks volumes.  In a civil trial, it might even clear the 50% preponderance of the evidence hurdle we’d need to clear to win.

As we’re now (FINALLY!) being reminded, it was Mitch McConnell who refused to let Barack Obama inform We The People that Russia didn’t just want Trump to win, they were actively working to MAKE him win. Hey – how familiar is that?  Trump, we just learned, went batshit crazy when Joseph Maguire, the head of the DNI, told Congressional Democrats (including Adam Schiff) that Russia was actively gaming the election – including the Democratic primaries – on Trump’s behalf.

Trump was worried the Democrats would use the information against him (of course they will). That they might use the information to DEFEND THEMSELVES?  Not part of Trump’s equation…

Anyone who thinks the Majority (that’s who was cheated here) can sit by idly while lifetime judges – nominated by a criminal POTUS who never had the authority to nominate anyone (only legitimate potuses are authorized to do that) – continue to steer us AWAY from the country we voted for is foolish.

It will be unthinkably hard – voiding an election’s results – and we almost certainly won’t do it.

But then we should not be surprised when – not too far in the future – the ripple effects of leaving injustice in place catches up with us.

As it will…

History’s pretty consistent that way.

Leaving the results of election 2016 in place is an understandable shoulder shrug in the face of a very hard ask. But the alternative will be another Civil War. How can there not be when we refuse to learn from History – and insist on living a lie that betrays our values and, in fact, leads us diametrically away from them?

We Live Inside A Giant False Narrative — That Donald Trump Is “Legitimate POTUS”

False narratives — creating them, living them, suffering the consequences of living them — it seems to go with being human. So, I’ll cut us some slack.

The unfortunate humans who live inside North Korea’s borders live inside a false narrative that Kim Jong-On isn’t a sociopathic madman at the helm of a hermitic dictatorship with nuclear weapons at his disposal. They think he’s a kind of god — just like his father and grandfather — because that’s what they’ve been told.

North Koreans have been deliberately fed a false narrative about how life and politics are. The point wasn’t to liberate them. One never creates a false narrative to do good things for people — despite what one tells oneself. You’re turning away from empirical truth — and choosing to walk toward fiction. Every step toward fiction is a step away from actual truth.

There may be lashings of truth IN your fiction — but, whereas facts won’t let you do with them what you want, with fiction? You can spin a story however you like. You’re bound by story logic — but not logic logic.

The biggest false narrative going, of course, is religion. The people who write religious texts — the Old Testament for instance — start out from a genuine place: they want to answer the big questions — what is life? How did we get here? Why are we here and what is the point of it all? Unless they’re wearing lab coats — with strict protocols for managing their experimentation — they’re going to pull the answers to those questions from their own heads. Or their asses.

If the men who wrote Genesis had access to the internet — if they had microscopes and telescopes available — if they knew about germ theory and plate tectonics — if they knew even that there were continents other than the one they lived on (they didn’t!) — would they have written the texts they wrote the way they wrote them? Of course not! Their worldview — even the questions themselves — would have been informed by their knowledge. They wouldn’t have written a Noah’s flood story they way they wrote it because the facts on the ground — literally — would have made such a story preposterous.

Sometimes — as with religion — the intention of the false narrative is to explain the world from the religion’s viewpoint. But, what if the starting viewpoint is wrong — or distorted. Or misinformed. What if monotheists are wrong and polytheists are right — there’s not one good, there are dozens, thousands, kajillions?

Who’s really to say? Got proof there’s only one “God”? Remind the class — who wrote that story? Oh, right — people who were “divinely inspired”. Another false narrative begins.

Even before he was sworn in, Donald Trump began signaling to us that he was not the legitimate president — that his win wasn’t what we thought it was. Take yourself back to election night 2016. Remember how it felt as Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin went red? The story was just believable enough — the press had taken the “But her emails” ball and run wild with it. Doubts about Clinton could have been the difference — 78,000 votes spread between three states. It was just plausible enough for us to allow “Well, maybe…”.

That’s all it took. The truth is, to this day, we don’t know what happened in those three states. We don’t. But the stone cold fact is Paul Manafort handed Oleg Deripaska PROPRIETARY POLLING DATA for four states (the three mentioned plus Minnesota). That’s not nothing. That’s very sensitive data about Americans, who they are and how they vote — being handed to a man with deep ties to Russian Military Intelligence.

Russian military intelligence (for those slow on the uptake) is especially good at creating, disseminating and benefiting from propaganda. They’ve gotten very good at using social media to — say it with me — create false narratives. In those three states — we know this happened — Democratic voters (African American voters especially) found their Facebook pages inundated with ads disparaging Hilary Clinton — accusing her of being a racist on the down low.

Sure, plenty of those African American voters ignored those ads. But — we also know — some stayed home. That’s no different from a stolen vote. It’s election fraud — PERIOD.

Also — no one in an official capacity has ever done any forensics on the voting machines in those three states. As we’re learning more and more — any voting machine hooked up to the internet in any way is hackable. Anyone who denies that fact wants machines that are hackable in our elections. WHY?

Any voting process that isn’t hand-marked with a complete paper trail is bullshit.

People who want free and fair elections have no problems with oversight. They welcome it because it guarantees free and fair elections. People who want shortcuts — who are willing to take what election machine vendors (almost all Republican owned companies by the way — yes, it matters) say at face value — aren’t interested in Democracy, they’re interested in undermining Democracy. Not the same thing.

If the Rule Of Law is alive and well, then you cannot cheat to become president of the United States. You cannot ASK a foreign country to help you and you cannot ACCEPT THEIR HELP when offered. But that’s exactly what Donald Trump did — repeatedly and out in the open. The Mueller Report did not exonerate Trump in any way. Quick Reminder — the Mueller Report was not the be-all & end-all of “Trump-Russia” involvements. It addressed ONE — the Trump campaign’s relationship with Wikileaks. And the report said that it couldn’t ANSWER whether or not the Trump campaign conspired with Russia because of (Mueller Report Part Two) ALL THE OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE the Trump campaign were perpetrating.

All those SDNY investigations that Bill Barr slowed or blocked or snuffed? They would have begun exploring all the other ways Donald Trump, his campaign — and the whole Republican Party ultimately — had fallen prey to Russian intelligence. Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate is a non-stop reminder of just how corrupt the Republican Party is. Their defense didn’t rise to the level of “silly” it was so bad.

They don’t want to hear Bolton or any other witnesses because they KNOW what those witnesses will say. They KNOW what the evidence says — they’ve already heard what lots of it says. This is about keeping the truth about what happened out of the public record. WHY?

Most Republicans assume that once a lifetime judge is in place, he or she stays in place forever. Keep in mind — part of the point of this coup d’etat started years before the election. It took the form of Mitch McConnell hijacking the judiciary. He refused to let Obama appoint judges that he quickly filled once Trump was sworn in. He refused to grant Merrick Garland so much as a hearing. Hello, Neil Gorsuch.

But all that assumes we continue to accept the product of the false narrative Republicans created.

Let’s put this in terms even Donald Trump would understand. Let’s say the presidency was a beauty pageant. The winner gets lots of good things. They get to live in the White House. They get to tell the military what to do. They get to suggest and change laws. They get to appoint judges including Supreme Court judges.

That’s if they win — and they’re the Beauty Pageant WINNER.

But let’s say we find ample evidence that the Beauty Pageant Winner cheated. Let’s say the bribed judges — or threatened them. Let’s say the Winner conspired with people outside the pageant to pick a winner (outside the pageant’s rules). And let’s say these people succeeded. The Pageant’s real judges wanted Contestant X to win. That contestant reflected the Pageant’s values and hopes for the Pageant’s future.

But some of the judges, it turns out, were corrupt. The whole voting process, it turns out, was corrupted. When the judges voted — one of their votes was tallied the wrong way. Another judge went home sick and didn’t vote at all (food poisoning they think). From the moment the Winner was announced, lots of the judges — people in the audience, too — they knew something was wrong.

Okay — so the wrong person now wears the crown. They have all the power that comes with it — all the rights & privileges. But none of it actually belongs to them.

Now the Winner starts giving paying jobs to her friends. She fudges the books so no one can tell where the Pageant’s money is going. The Pageant starts co-branding with mobsters and criminals and all sorts of unsavory people the Pageant’s judges would never have agreed to. The Winner starts changing everything about the Pageant — despite the fact that they WEREN’T the actual winner and everything they’re doing goes directly AGAINST everything the judges ACTUALLY wanted and — this being democratic in theory — voted for.

But then, the judges discover evidence that PROVES the Winner cheated. They show it to the public because the public needs to know (while the Winner is doing things that directly impact them) — there’s a very good reason why the judges will now take away the Winner’s crown: it never belonged to them. EVER.

So — the Winner loses his crown. He can no longer claim to be the Winner because 1) he no longer is and 2) he never ever was.

Ah, but what of his “winnings”? What of the now-ex-Winner’s spoils? What of the laws they changed — though they had no authority to change them (only REAL winners have the LEGAL right to do that)? What of the lifetime judges they nominated THAT THEY HAD NO LEGAL AUTHORITY TO NOMINATE?

Remember all the judges Al Gore nominated? Exactly — he didn’t nominate any because he didn’t win — and was never given the authority. If he had tried to, we’d have laughed at him — “Dude, what’re you doing? You LOST. Losers don’t get to nominate anything.”

A cheater who’s been caught stops being “the winner”. A car thief has to give back the car he stole (provided it hasn’t been chop shopped into pieces already). He may have the memories of driving around in your ride, but all rights of ownership return to YOU, the rightful OWNER.

We The People “own” the outcomes of our elections. That is, we expect that our choice — if we’re in the majority — to be the basis for how our government will act. Provided our candidate followed all the laws in order to win the election, his or her actions are truly sanctioned by the electorate.

But, Donald Trump can’t say that about his “win”. He wasn’t sanctioned by he electorate. The majority of us voted not just FOR Hillary but AGAINST Trump and everything he stood for and wanted to do. We voted AGAINST destroying the government, AGAINST destroying our relationships with the world, AGAINST cozying up to Russia, AGAINST corruption in the extreme, AGAINST destroying the environment, AGAINST racism & misogyny & bigotry and judges who are FOR all those things.

The only reason Trump’s potus at all is because he manipulated the Electoral College. By literally STEALING Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania (for starters — we don’t know how pervasive the theft was), Trump robbed the American People of their actual choice. The victim of this crime is us, the American People.

What are we — crime victims in this — to do once the full depth of Trump (and the Republican Party’s) deep criminality gets revealed. Are we to shrug off the crime — and especially the part where the criminal gets to keep what he stole? Those judges — those laws — the dismantling of our system of checks and balances — that’s all stolen property. It belongs to US. It doesn’t belong to Donald Trump or the Republican Party.

They’re the car thief sitting in OUR CAR — in OUR DRIVEWAY — honking the horn at us at three in the morning.

What makes matters worse? Turns out the car thief has pals in the police department. Fact is, the thief knows the “chief of police”. That’s going to make prosecuting the car thief — and getting our car back — hard. But that doesn’t mean we don’t do it.

There’s a big “Come To Jesus” moment coming us by-and-by. We’re going to have to reconcile the false narrative we’ve been living in — that Trump’s the legitimate potus and everything he’s done is legit and inviolable — with the facts: Trump’s a criminal. He stole the outcome of election 2016 — and everything that goes with it.

Are we REALLY going to let him — and the Republican Party who benefited from it (that was the point, right?) continue to benefit when the benefits were never theirs to begin with?

If we do that — if we let thieves keep what they’ve stolen — we will not solve our problem. The criminals will continue to own us. They’ll continue to have a say in how we live our lives — and even run the Rule Of Law. If don’t recognize how stupid that will be?

We’ll deserve every bit of the horribleness that follows.

It’ll be “Slavery: The Sequel”.

You remember slavery, right? That’s the abomination we created a false narrative around — that it was acceptable for a Democratic Republic to have slavery.

Donald Trump Has NEVER Been The Legitimate POTUS; Everything Needs To Flow From That Fact

If I steal your car then – just to be an even bigger asshole – sit outside your house at four in the morning, the expensive stereo cranked up high, pounding the horn, it doesn’t make me the car’s owner. I can take the registration from the glove compartment and cross out your name (with a sharpie, like Donald) and scrawl in my name instead.

It STILL doesn’t make me the car’s owner. COS I STOLE IT FROM YOU!

To circumvent the Will Of The People is to steal their choice from them. Gerrymandering is (“was” hopefully) legalized circumvention of the majority’s will. Voter suppression is another form of legalized circumvention. That, too, needs to be relegated to the dust bin. The only reason to not want every eligible voter to vote is because you fear how they’ll all vote. IF you thought they’d vote FOR you — you’d drive them all the polls yourself.

That’s not what’s happening here. Do we really have to ask why?

Republicans have been forced into a corner by America’s rapidly changing demographics. Without literally cheating, they cannot win a presidency. Without the Electoral College tying the Democrats’ hands behind their backs, literally handing Republicans political power not merited by the actual slice of America they represent, Republicans wouldn’t get anywhere near winning a presidency.

The GOP — the GOP’s money actually (so we’re talking the Kochs & Mercers etc using Mitch McConnell as their point turtle) — hitched their wagon to Trump even KNOWING how compromised he was. No one’s stupid in this group. Steve Bannon surely hipped everyone with the money (he worked with the Mercers at Cambridge Analytica) — all of them having strange, dark religious bents — to the fact that Vladimir Putin’s end game wasn’t so far removed from theirs.

Make no mistake: the grand plan Vlad Putin launched against us worked better than even he expected only because he founds such a willing collaborator in the far right wing of the Republican Party. Because they let the Russian money flow freely down to every local election (can anyone say where ALL of the NRA’s Russia-originating money landed?), they corrupted every single race every single Republican ran in. Elections are free & FAIR or they ain’t. There’s no middle ground here.

Let’s not worry about voting machines here. No one’s examined them (officially). Lots of hard evidence exists that says those machines are almost instantaneously hackable. No one’s really looked at the strange way 77,000 votes across Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin line up with the proprietary polling data that Paul Manafort handed Oleg Deripaska (of the Russian GRU) that covered Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Let’s worry instead about HOW that weaponized polling data was played back onto DEMOCRATIC voters in those three states (plus Minnesota apparently) as propagandized ads on their individual Facebook pages. A voter who does not go to the polls — because they’ve been lied to in their homes ffs — is a vote for the other side. It is no different than CHANGING their vote in its impact relative to what that voter wanted from the election.

If we don’t get hip to the sophisticated weapon being used against us, we should just turn off the lights now. Before the Russians do it for us.

Look at election night and the way the news of Trump’s victory played in Trump’s own camp. They, too, were shocked by the win — not because they thought they’d pulled it out but because they were suddenly faced with the monstrosity they were now part of — A STOLEN ELECTION.

As Trump himself keeps harping on — an “illegitimate” election. Why, you have to ask, has Trump himself always worried about his own legitimacy.

Because he knows he has none.

Can we please, please, PLEASE cut to the end of THAT chase?

If Donald Trump stole the election — stole the Will of The American People from them, then he does not own either a “winning” outcome or anything that flowed from that “win” that wasn’t his. He can’t claim ownership to our car just because his Russian pal found a way to put him behind its wheel.

If Trump was never actually POTUS then he never had the authority to do what POTUSes do — like nominate judges to lifetime appointments.

And — by the way — every Republican who benefited from that same stolen outcome? Their “wins”, too, need to be seen in the light of treason.

Oh — it is very definitely treason. This is war time — cyber war. I’m quite clear this is World War Three we’re all living through. We just don’t know it yet because we still think wars require bombs, bullets & outright declarations.

If we keep thinking that, we’ll lose every war we ever fight going forward — starting with this one. Russia doesn’t think that — know what I mean?

A presidency stolen because of treason (and greed and stupidity and lots more greed) is not a presidency. Rules made by that presidency have no legitimacy and — like the judges — must be voided outright as if they never existed. They never had a “right” to exist.

If we’re really going to bring the Rule Of Law back — for real and for good — there can be no exceptions ever. It’s exceptions that break the Rule Of Law.

The Rule Of Law is pretty clear: thieves do not get to keep what they stole. I won’t get to keep your car after I’m caught and Trump (and the Reapublicans) shouldn’t get to keep what THEY stole either.

Dear MSM – Get This Through Your Thick Skulls: It’s NOT “Political”

The worst part of Both Sides Do It journalism is its stupid assumption that everything must be political.

That’s the dopey go-along with “Every argument has two sides”.

People may express two sides but that doesn’t mean there are two sides — and it certainly doesn’t mean that if there are “two sides” that those two sides walk in the door in a 50-50 relationship.

Take climate change and climate denial. Early on, our MSM regularly presented these two arguments in a “Both Sides Do It” framework. Any actual climate science had to be “balanced” with someone willing to voice the “other side’s argument”.

But, in the case of climate change, there IS NO other side’s argument. There’s bullshit and lying and subterfuge and nonsense. But, even bullshit — when presented as a 50-50 possibility — can suddenly seem viable even though it isn’t. Every time CNN or MSNBC or any other news operation put a climate scientist on their air with a climate denier — and framed them in a 50-50 shot (each talking head taking up the exact same amount of screen), they were telling their news audience (even if unintentionally) that climate SCIENCE and absolute bullshit were equally true, equally believable.

Except it’s NOT true.

Both Sides Do It journalism creates false narratives (like Trump “won” election 2016 without Russia’s help). It says that if Republicans cheat to win elections then Democrats must cheat, too.

But, unlike Republicans, Democrats do NOT suppress votes. They don’t jettison names off of voter rolls. They don’t conspire with foreign powers to win elections either. Both sides absolutely do not do this.

What if we take election fraud out of the equation and, instead, make the crime a shooting — on 5th Avenue. Donald Trump, as promised, pulls out a piece and blows the brains out of a supporter right there in front of everyone. If a Democrat dials the FBI on their cell phone to report Trump, it’s not politics motivating them — it’ stone, cold MURDER.

That Democrat isn’t being political, they’re being a good citizen. Only a republican — or an American journalist — can see an act of citizenship in purely political terms.

If I were to mug a journalist — demand their wallet — it’s not politics motivating me, it’ greed. Perhaps if our MSM were to pull its head from its bottom and stop seeing the world in purely political terms they might grasp the larger story they’re reporting on. They might see my intent for what it is and for what it isn’t.

The Democrats in the House aren’t prosecuting Trump because they don’t like him (they don’t) or because he’s a republican while they’re Democrats (Trump isn’t even really a Republican — he’s nothing & nothingness). They’re prosecuting him because he violated his oath of office the literal second he spoke it.

The Rule Of Law either is or it isn’t. There’s no middle ground. If one violates it, one must get punished for it. The whole point is that it ISN’T political and upholding it STANDS OUTSIDE politics.

If I object to Trump shooting people on Fifth Avenue, I object because it’s illegal, immoral and disgusting.

The “R” next to Trump’s name is irrelevant except as a marker.

Either Every Vote Counts Or No Votes Count

We need to make up our goddamned minds about voting. Personally, I believe that literally EVERY VOTE counts.

In election 2018, according to the Washington Post, in 133 races out of the 4,137 run that election cycle, the winner’s margin of victory was under 100 votes. That’s 3.2% of all races.

That would mean that a successful voter suppression operation only had to stop 100 people from showing up across thousands of voting districts in order to accomplish its goal: changing the outcome of an election, not by selling better ideas but by tricking or lying voters into not voting.

In a close race — decided by fewer than 100 votes — each and every voter tricked into not voting is as good as a vote for the other guy. What part of that is either free or fair?

In 2016, Republicans, with Russia’s help, carried out the Mother of all voter suppression operations. What was Paul Manafort’s intention when he handed Oleg Deripaska proprietary polling data from Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota? Was it simply “Hey, Oleg, here’s some cool stuff you might want to peruse in your copious free time”? Or was it “Hey, Oleg, here’s proprietary American polling data. Weaponize it, please.

Next thing ya know? African Americans in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan are seeing ads on their Facebook pages raging about Hillary Clinton’s secret racist agenda. It’s absurd. But the point of the exercise isn’t swaying the great unwashed masses. Sway one voter — you COULD sway a whole election.

If Russia’s efforts changed one vote — just one — that means they could have changed that election’s entire outcome.

Either our elections are free and fair or they aren’t. There’s no middle ground. Elections — like integrity — are either 100% legit or they’re not legit at all. Ever meet someone with most of their integrity (say 95%)?

No, you haven’t. You have integrity or you don’t.

An election is free and fair or it isn’t.

Every vote counts — or none of them actually do.