Impeachment Hysteria Versus Reality

 

Our family is very politically aware (and fortunately for us and family comity, all conservatives), and as everyone with a pulse knows, virtually from Inauguration Day there have been calls for President Trump’s impeachment. The hysteria seems to be reaching a crescendo recently, dominating news coverage, and as a result I received an email the other day from one of the younger members of our clan, a Millennial:

“Hello there!

“What do you think the odds are of Trump getting impeached? That’s all I see in my news feed now!

“Brett R.”

To answer Brett’s question, I think the odds of that are pretty much zero. First of all, you’ve got to understand that the “news” feed is all pretty much just biased – and I mean to a point I’ve never before seen in my lifetime – agenda-driven rubbish.

But to the actual legalities, there has to be actual “cause” for impeachment. Per the Constitution, that means “high crimes or misdemeanors”. So, what actual “crimes” or “misdemeanors” has Trump actually committed? None that I can think of.

Then there’s political reality. Impeachment takes place in the House, and conviction takes place in the Senate and requires a 2/3 vote of the Senators to do so and remove him from office. Both the House and the Senate are controlled by the GOP. So, what are the odds of ANY of that actually happening?

Precedent. Only two sitting Presidents have ever been impeached: Andrew Johnson and “Quick-Zipper Bill” Clinton. Neither was convicted. Johnson’s impeachment was purely politically motivated, based on his Reconstruction policies, and his conviction was one vote shy. Clinton actually had committed a crime – perjury – and yet wasn’t convicted in the Senate. So, particularly in light of Pantsuit Hillary’s federal felonious actions with her email rig and the failure to indict HER, I can’t see any way an actual impeachment takes place.

Another political reality. I think impeaching Trump would actually BENEFIT him. We saw the same dynamic when Billy-Bubba was impeached: his popularity actually increased. I think the same dynamic would inure to Trump. There’s a VERY large percentage of people in this country that are simply fed up with the SOP of how both major parties have been conducting business over the last few decades. Trump’s election is the embodiment of that frustration. Impeaching him… the consequences of that could be beyond imagination.

All these impeachment noises are being made by left-wing radicals spouting moronic sound bites for public consumption; people like Maxine Waters and “Nancy the Red” Pelosi. It’s become Dem/socialist SOP to act like silly, spoiled children. And all the while they’re doing it they’re losing actual political power all across the country with the exception of a few blue coastal states like Commiefornia and Taxachussetts.

I see this as simply political Kabuki from the American socialists. Think about it. If Trump’s impeached and convicted, that doesn’t roll back the election clock and make the Pantsuit Lady President. Mike Pence becomes President! They know that as well as I do. And that would be about the worst thing that could happen to them and their agenda, because he’s as clean as a whistle, and a great conservative. It would absolutely CRUSH their political aspirations. The whole point of this impeachment drivel is to try to keep Trump off balance, and to delegitimize him in order to try to weaken him. An actual impeachment would be a huge strategic error on their part.

Like I said, I think the chances are pretty much zero.

 

 

©Brian Baker 2017

 

(Also published today in my local newspaper, The Signal)

 

Arrogance, Personified

Take a look at this man’s face.

koskinen

Is this Monte Burns from “The Simpsons”?

 

This is John Koskinen, the Commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), arguably the most powerful and feared bureaucracy in the Federal Government.

Who does he remind you of? Doesn’t he bring to mind the character of Mr. Burns in the long-running TV series The Simpsons? Sure does to me. And like that character, he has the ability to destroy people’s lives through the wanton exercise of raw, sheer power, in his case via his agency’s ability to direct the force of government against individuals and organizations.

The only check against such naked power is the Congress.

We all know about the scandal surrounding the IRS’s illegal targeting of conservative organizations for harassment, and the efforts by the House of Representatives to get to the bottom of that mess. And those acts took place before Koskinen’s assumption of the reins of that agency.

But when he took over the agency six months ago he vowed to be proactive “in restoring public trust” to that institution (businessweek.com/news/2014-01-07).

So… how’s he doing?

I think the latest development sums it up pretty well. It seems the IRS has “lost” several years’ worth of emails that Lois Lerner – the miscreant at the center of this whole fiasco – sent out to her minions, emails that anyone with half a brain realizes could prove to be very incriminating, not only to her but to others farther up the political food chain. Quite possibly as high as the Oval Office itself.

Bear in mind, this is the exact same agency that won’t accept YOUR excuse that you lost your receipts for some tax deduction you claimed.

And how has Koskinen reacted when asked about these “lost” emails by Darryl Issa’s House committee members?

With absolutely smug sanctimony, contempt, arrogance, and a rigid refusal to even offer any kind of apology for the malfeasance of his agency. Way to go in “restoring public trust” in the IRS, John-Boy!

This, my friends, is what the face of arrogance looks like.

When Nixon was President the Watergate scandal took center stage. Members of the House from both parties set aside partisanship to ensure the rule of law prevailed. Nixon resigned, and several members of his staff – including Attorney-General John Mitchell – went to prison for acts that were utterly benign compared to the level of outright corruption we’re seeing from this administration.

The ongoing IRS mess; Operation Fast & Furious; the Benghazi affair; the NSA spying on civilians; the illegal “rewriting” of laws, such as all the Obamacare extensions and exceptions; the imperial imposition of “rules”, such as through the EPA, that far exceed presidential authority; the failure of the Justice Department and the FBI to pursue action based on political considerations; the outright refusal to enforce immigration law and border security; the Veterans’ Administration letting vets die on secret “waiting lists”; the list goes on and on and on. This President and his minions have absolutely no regard for the rule of law that I can see. The level of corruption in this administration is simply staggering and unprecedented.

Koskinen’s is only the latest face in a Rogue’s Gallery of arrogance, personified.

Further, this corruption of our system is being willfully abetted by the Democrat members of Congress who are facilitating the destruction by not only standing idle, but actively supporting the administration’s efforts. I’m talking about people like Harry Reid, Elijah Cummings, Nancy Pelosi, and far too many others to name.

Jonathan Turley is a well-known professor of law at George Washington University Law School with a self-described “socially liberal agenda”, often seen on various news shows as a commentator and expert analyst, and has had many of his works published. On his own blog he’s written a couple of essays that are well on point. In one, “How Nixon Won Watergate”, which was also published in USA Today (how-nixon-won-Watergate) he states, “…the painful fact is that Barack Obama is the president that Nixon always wanted to be”. He expands on that topic in his essay “A Question of Power: The Imperial Presidency”, which was also published last month in American Legion Magazine (the imperial presidency), in which he writes, “The shift of power to the presidency certainly did not start with President Barack Obama. To the contrary, this trend has been gaining ground for decades. But it has accelerated under Obama, who has succeeded to a degree that would have made Richard Nixon blush.”

If Nixon would be blushing, Obama and his acolytes have exceeded all bounds. The scandals pile up so fast you need wings to stay above them. It’s absolutely dizzying.

 

©Brian Baker 2014

 

(6/30/2014: My local newspaper published an edited version of this essay today:  http://www.signalscv.com/section/33/article/122832/)

 

War And Syria. An Open Letter To My Congressman

The following is a letter I hand-delivered to the local office of my Congressman, Representative Howard “Buck” McKeon, who also happens to be Chairman of the House Committee on Armed Services. I’ll let the letter speak for itself.

Brian Baker
(ADDRESS)
Saugus, CA   91390

(661) (PHONE NUMBER)

(EMAIL ADDRESS)

4 Sep 2013

th[6] (3)Representative Howard “Buck” McKeon

Dear Buck,

I want to take this opportunity to express to you my thoughts on the current situation vis-à-vis Syria, as I know you and your fellow legislators will be debating the issue in the very near future.

First some background. I grew up in a foreign service/military family and spent five years in the Middle East (Iran) where I went to high school in the mid 1960s. My Armenian mother, now a naturalized American citizen for over six decades, was born and raised in Iran. I’m a Vietnam veteran, Life Member of the VFW, and student of military affairs and doctrine. Because of this background I consider myself pretty knowledgeable about the issues involved in this current situation.

To be blunt, I see absolutely no reason for this country to be engaged in the internal strife in Syria, on any level.

First of all, we don’t even have a horse in this race. Why would we consider backing one group against another group when the reality is that whichever side prevails is still going to hate us? Haven’t we learned anything from history? From Iran? From Libya? From Egypt? From Iraq, which is already falling to pieces again?

Consider Afghanistan. Why are we fighting there? What’s our purpose? How do we define “victory”? How do we get back out of there? When? What’s going to happen after we leave? Do we want to keep repeating the same stupid mistakes over and over and over again?

Einstein noted that the definition of insanity is repeating the same actions while expecting different results. Isn’t that what we’re doing in the Middle East? Or as Santayana noted, those who ignore the past are condemned to repeat it.

There are only two reasons why this country should ever go to war: to defend ourselves, and to protect or extend our own national self-interest. Well, Syria certainly isn’t attacking us, and I can’t discern any national self-interest in what’s taking place in their internal civil war.

Obama babbles about some vague and chimerical “responsibility” that “the world” has to respond to the alleged use of chemical weapons in Iraq, and then threatens to attack Syria with missiles. Well, first of all, if “the world” has such a responsibility, why isn’t “the world” doing the attacking? Why are we “the world’s” police force? And isn’t such an attack absolutely no different from the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor? That “day that will live in infamy”? We would be attacking a country that hasn’t attacked us, nor any other country beyond its own borders. There are no treaty obligations or commitments anywhere that would attach to or justify such an action.

Let’s examine the strategic implications. First of all, as anyone with military knowledge and/or experience knows, your battle plan lasts only until the first shot is fired. After that, the other guy gets a say, too, and your plan goes out the window. From that point on, everything is improvisation. Obama may think, in his abject ignorance, that he can blithely lob a few missiles at Syria without any repercussions, but he – and we, if he does it – is in for a rude awakening if Syria or its allies decide to respond in some fashion. They have a myriad of choices on what they can do, and most of them are potentially very unpleasant. You’re the Chairman of the Armed Services Committee; I’m not telling you anything there that you don’t already know.

There are also the political considerations of the end result. Obama, as did Bush before him, seems to think that somehow we can accomplish some kind of “nation building” in the region resulting in Western-style democracies friendly to our country. Nothing could be further from the truth, and I say that based on my intimate knowledge of the region. The regional Islamic nations don’t have the cultural or social heritages requisite for such a result. They’re riven by sectarianism, centuries-old rivalries based on religious dogma, clannishness, endemic and institutionalized corruption, and a religion that discourages individuality and independent action. Their social structures are dominated by “strong men” who hold on to power with a death grip. Show me one example where we removed one of these men and he was replaced by what we would consider a “democracy”. There aren’t any such examples.

th[5]The last, and possibly most, important thing I want to mention is this: just who does Obama think he is to drag this nation to the brink of war on his own say-so? The Constitution is crystal clear that the power to declare war rests SOLELY with Congress. The President doesn’t have the power to declare war on his own, nor does he have the veto power over Congress’s own determination.

Obama’s been acting like he’s been coronated with the laurel wreath of an Emperor, instead of simply elected as President. He has absolutely no authority to go around lobbing missiles at other hapless countries simply because he feels like it, no matter what his supposed “justification” is. That’s up to CONGRESS to decide, not him.

And I’ll take that one step further. Obama’s been making not-so-veiled threats of proceeding with his bombing anyway if he doesn’t get congressional approval. In my opinion, that is the very definition of an impeachable offense, and if he does in fact do that, I’ll expect articles of impeachment to follow promptly.

Thank you, Buck, for taking the time to consider my thoughts on this matter. I’m also going to post a copy of this on my own blog site as an “open letter”. I hope you don’t mind, but I want my readers to know my thoughts on the subject.

Here’s the site’s URL, if you’re interested:  https://theviewfromtheisland.wordpress.com/

Sincerely,

 

 

© Brian Baker 2013