Saturday, January 28, 2017

Executive Orders Are OK Now!

Remember all of the Republican criticism of President Obama's executive orders? Apparently, the concerns about Executive Branch overreach have disappeared with the ascension of Donald Trump to the Oval Office. Trump just set a record for the number of executive orders issued by a president during his first week in office (see

Republicans say that The Donald is merely undoing the damage which President Obama did by issuing his executive orders (see But isn't their acceptance of Trump's actions a tacit acceptance of the presidential prerogative to take such actions? And what about the fact that many of Trump's actions have gone beyond the ones issued by his predecessor? Isn't Trump doing the same thing that Obama did? Isn't he expressing his unwillingness to wait on congressional action on these matters? After all, isn't it reasonable to assume that a Republican controlled Congress is just as interested as their leader in rolling back the agenda of the previous Administration? Why not wait on them to take action?

Hmmmm, that sure does look like hypocrisy in action from the vantage point of the Teacher's Roost! It is an imperative to oppose the executive actions of a liberal Democrat, but it is OK for a "conservative" Republican to issue as many as he likes? What do you think?

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Payback is hell!

In a recent interview with Chuck Todd of NBC's Meet The Press, Representative John Lewis of Georgia stirred up a big controversy when he said, "I don't see the President-elect as a legitimate president." -- This drew a sharp rebuke from The Donald on Twitter. As with most bullies, it appears that Mr. Trump and some of his fellow Republicans (it should be pointed out that a good many Republicans rallied to defend Lewis) can dish it out, but they can't take it.

How quickly some of us forget! Mr. Trump was an active proponent of the birther nonsense throughout much of Obama's presidency. -- Even after the President produced his birth certificate (a birth announcement in a Honolulu paper from the period was already part of the public record) and conclusively demonstrated that he had been born in Hawaii (NOT Kenya), Mr. Trump claimed that it wasn't authentic - that it was a fraud. Indeed, Trump only finally acknowledged that the President had been born in this country shortly before his own election to the office!

Mr. Trump, however, was not alone it his attempts to delegitimize President Obama. Throughout his tenure in the White House other Republicans attempted to portray him as not being one of us. The narrative was that he didn't believe in American exceptionalism, and that he was himself a Muslim. Dick Cheney said, "Barack Obama doesn't believe in an exceptional America." -- Former GOP Representative Joe Walsh of Illinois said, "I think Obama is Muslim." -- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell famously made the decision early in Obama's presidency to oppose everything that he attempted to do, and just last year made the decision to completely ignore his nominee to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court created by the death of Justice Scalia.

Now it appears that the chickens have come home to roost. As a consequence of Civil Rights icon John Lewis' statement about Trump's legitimacy, a growing number of Democrats and others have elected to boycott Trump's inauguration this week. I wonder if a few folks are beginning to regret their behavior over the past eight years - probably not! I'm sure that most of them think that we should all just settle down and do our "patriotic duty" to support this man as president. A message to my friends who support Mr. Trump is in order:  I wouldn't count on that happening!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Don't hold your breath!

For those folks who are still naive enough to believe that most of the folks who voted for Donald Trump will eventually realize that they've made a mistake and withdraw their support, you are more delusional than they are! It should be clear to everyone by now that most Trump supporters will not be persuaded by ANY evidence of this man's inadequacy for the office he is about to hold. If the just finished election cycle wasn't proof enough of this phenomenon, one only has to look at the supportive comments posted by some of them in reaction to negative statements and stories posted by others.

Over the past few weeks, I have surveyed some of the reactions to stories posted on Yahoo about Putin's hacking of the Democrats and efforts to help the Trump campaign and came away with a renewed conviction that NOTHING could dislodge some of these folks from the Trump camp. Although they cover a wide range, from those who dismiss the importance of the stories to those who reject the evidence provided as false, they all have one thing in common:  Their unwavering support for The Donald.

Nevertheless, many of the folks who did not support Trump in the last election have continued to express their incredulity at the level of loyalty expressed by his supporters. They have made the same mistake that most of the Democrats and Republicans who opposed him during the last election made - they have not understood the intense devotion of these folks to the idea of Trump. Donald Trump was absolutely right about one thing that he said during the campaign:  "I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn't lose any voters."

How can they continue to support this man in the face of so much evidence that he is unworthy to be President of the United States of America? Most of the folks who continue to ask this question are looking in the wrong place for answers. The answer will not be found in the man himself. The answer is simple:  Most of his supporters have too much invested in him to jump ship now.

For them, Donald Trump represents the antithesis of everything they think is wrong with America (e.g. political correctness, free trade, civil disobedience, illegal immigration, the Affordable Care Act, the decline of America's "traditional values," etc.). In other words, Trump represents the antidote for what is poisoning the country they love. As a consequence, they have invested their hope, confidence and support in this image of the man. Moreover, they are well aware of all that they have invested in this man (they know how much they have overlooked). For most of them, to admit that they were wrong - to acknowledge that they have placed the country in jeopardy - to concede that their children, grandchildren and/or liberal friends were right about him - to confess that they might have jeopardized the future of this planet by placing this enormous responsibility in the hands of this man - would be akin to admitting the failure of their own judgment in the matter. Put another way, if he is wrong, that means they are wrong!

That is why those of us who see the dangers to our country which are inherent in Trump's experiences, statements and actions need to be just as steadfast in our opposition to him. We cannot act like all is well - that everything is normal and as it should be. To do so would legitimize him and what he represents and would amount to our acquiescence and culpability in what happens next.  What do you think?