Monday, August 28, 2017

Adolf Eichmann - American Style

“With his pardon of Arpaio, Trump has chosen lawlessness over justice, division over unity, hurt over healing. Once again, the president has acted in support of illegal, failed immigration enforcement practices that target people of color and have been struck down by the courts. His pardon of Arpaio is a presidential endorsement of racism."
ACLU Deputy Legal Director Cecillia Wang
And on a star-spangled night, my love
You can place your rights on the fireplace
And by the dawn's early light, my love
Your Constitution's turned to dust....
Former Sheriff Joe Arpaio was custom-made to be a footnote in the history of the disgusting administration of Donald J. Trump. A race-baiting little tyrant from the state of Arizona, Arpaio spent many years rounding up people with dark features whom he or his deputies suspected of being illegal aliens. They were hauled off to a "facility" that many compared to a concentration camp. The prisoners were denied proper nutrition and subject to inhuman treatment, forced to live in unsanitary conditions. As a result, several of them died while in Joe's custody. A number of years ago, a judge found his methods blatantly unconstitutional and ordered him to cease and desist, but Joe arrogantly ignored the ruling and continued on as if he was above the law he had sworn to enforce. He was found guilty of criminal contempt and was facing a six month sentence in the very pokey he had run only a year before. As anyone could have easily predicted, Donald Trump came to the rescue.

At a political rally in Phoenix a week ago (one that reminded me of Nuremberg, circa 1938) Trump hinted that a pardon for the racist sheriff was in the bag. Not to anyone's surprise, that pardon was granted by the middle of the week. Sheriff Joe, the twenty-first century's answer to Bull Connor, was in the clear.

Trump's pardoning of this rancid little demagogue is really a small part of a much larger and disturbing picture. A few talking-heads this week have speculated (and I'm inclined to agree with them) that what the Donald is doing here is merely an attempt to flex his muscles with regard to his constitutional power to pardon anyone he wishes to. It was his quaint little way of warning us that this particular pardon is the first of many, and that the people who are being questioned by Special Council Robert Mueller's team will be able to perjure themselves to their little hearts' content. His future decrees will make it certain that justice shall be subverted at his whim; that his class is above the law.

"A hard rain's a'gonna fall."
Uncle Bobby, 1963

But the most cruel and disturbing aspect to this story, by far, is the fact that Trump has again - just as he did regarding the riots in Charlottesville two weeks ago - just as he has been doing for his entire life as a public figure - telegraphed to his "base" the none-too subtle message that only the lives of the slowly-dwindling white majority matter. What is behind this civic atrocity is becoming more obvious with the passing of each month in America. The uber-rich (white) people who control this doomed country have no intention of recognizing the inevitable: that America is changing, and with those unstoppable changes will come a new reality that none of them will be able to forestall, much as they will try. What do you think is the idea behind the political movement to disenfranchise the traditional progressive constituency from participating in the democratic process? I do hope that the coming mass resistance is non-violent. I'm not sure that it will be. Of this I know beyond a doubt: It's not going to fail. Put any alternative end-result out of your mind. Social revolution is a natural process. You might as well try to keep the moon from rising in the eastern sky this evening. It's ain't gonna happen, baby. Deal with it!

Early this morning I sent an email to my cousin in Georgia who happens to be a rabid Trump supporter. By now, I had come to the misguided conclusion that maybe she had finally come to her senses and understood what a huge electoral blunder it was to send this incompetent, common pervert to the White House. Here is my message in full:

"Ain't hindsight a riot?"

Here is her reply in full:

"No I agree with you. Hindsight is 20/20.
Trump is doing a fabulous job".

Poor kid, she's obviously been down in dear old Dixie for too long. There are a lot of people out there in this troubled nation today who are waxing moronic about what a "fabulous job" this asshole is doing. I was reminded of this a couple of weekends ago when Donald's Goebbels-like handmaiden, Stephan Miller, declared on one of the Sunday morning talk shows that Trump is "the greatest orator in American history". It's almost impossible to respond to something that weird, but I don't think we should give up trying. Although Trump's support is evaporating by the day, I suspect that the numbers will not get much lower than twenty-five percent. It's as unsettling as it is strange. I can barely comprehend that we have sunk this low.

Living in Idiot Nation: It might very well be as nerve-wracking as hell - but it sure ain't boring, ay?

Fascism American Style. THAT'S-ME-AND-YOU!

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall
By Bob Dylan

I offer this one without comment.


At 3:05 PM, Blogger Joanne Noragon said...

He overwhelms us with his arrogance and power. We fight back, patriots with banners and signs, backing down the armed supporters. That it is happening makes me sick.

At 6:09 PM, Blogger Majormajor said...

Armed supporters?

At 8:14 PM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

Trump supporters will never "come to their senses". They have surrendered their ability to think and reason. They are emotionally bonded with their Dear Leader. They will never allow facts to guide their beliefs. They are no different from a cult.

Trump has declared our free press to be the "enemy".

True believers will even kill and die for their cult leader. Already we have a Republican elected to office after assaulting a journalist. Where will it end?

This is the danger hanging over our country.

At 6:45 AM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Tom Degan: "At a political rally in Phoenix a week ago (one that reminded me of Nuremberg, circa 1938) Trump hinted that a pardon for the racist sheriff was in the bag."

His continuation of the campaign, to capture the adulation of his adoring base while the rank-and-file Republicans continue to turn their backs on him, is very reminiscent of Adolf Hitler's Nuremberg rallies.

" may find yourself wondering, 'Did Obama have post-victory rallies? Did Bush? What about Clinton?' Newsweek investigative reporter Kurt Eichenwald wondered the same thing, so he did a little research. He had to go back quite a ways (and quite a distance) to find a similar set of circumstances:

Researched political, non-campaign victory rallies. Found 2: Trump's & Reichsparteitag des Sieges. Yah, it took place in 1930s. In Germany. ~~ Kurt Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) November 29, 2016

That’s right, the last time a politician held victory celebrations in his own honor they were called the Nuremberg Rallies. They began after the Nazis’ rise to power in 1933 and became a yearly event emblematic of the power of the regime’s propaganda machine.

Each year, the rallies grew larger and more impressive, and Hitler’s speeches became progressively more sinister. The rally in 1939, scheduled to begin on September 2, was cancelled at the last moment—Hitler and Germany had invaded Poland the day before.

So no, you don’t remember this happening. This is unusual.

As the great satirist Mark Twain once remarked: "History doesn't repeat itself, but it sure does rhyme."

At 12:02 PM, Blogger T. Paine said...


So idiot-boy Trump pardons Arpaio for trying to follow federal law by cracking down on illegal immigration and the far left is up in arms, but Obama pardons traitors like Bradley Manning, terrorists, and drug dealers and everybody on that fringe is quiet?


At 2:32 PM, Blogger Majormajor said...

Have you thought of this?

The judge 1. refused to recuse himself as the law requires, despite it being a family member that brought the complaint, 2. the judge violated the law by ordering a sheriff to break the law, 3. the judge violated the law by not having a jury trial as the constitution requires (despite the illegal Arizona law* allowing for such), and 4. the judge broke his oath of office by respecting persons.

It was just to pardon Arpaio. It also sent a message to judges that break the law for the judge's own benefit.

*Arizona claims it can prevent a person from having a jury trial if a crime is only a misdemeanor if the punishment is less than 6 months. That is a direct violation of the 6th Amendment. The judge had a duty to obey the supreme law of the land over a state law:
"Amendment 6
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime
shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense."

At 7:35 AM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Majormajor: "Armed supporters?"

Yes, armed. Read on and link...

"A Ku Klux Klan chapter holding a rally in downtown Charlottesville on Saturday afternoon says it expects 80 to 100 members and supporters to take part in the protest and that most will have guns with them.

'It’s an open-carry state, so our members will be armed,' said James Moore, a member of the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, which is headquartered in Pelham, N.C., near the Virginia border. Moore said that if members are attacked, they will defend themselves.


"Charlottesville proves that this issue is hardly theoretical anymore. In his order, Conrad chose to exclude from his First Amendment analysis the very strong possibility that demonstrators would carry weapons. (The city police warned the court that hundreds of protesters would bring firearms and that militia members would be in attendance.) But, ironically, by protecting the free speech rights of the white supremacists, Conrad may have ultimately suppressed speech by ensuring an armed confrontation between the neo-Nazis and the counter-protesters would break out and that police would be powerless to stop it until blood was spilled."

Once again, you're having to have your nose planted in the truth -- like when teaching a young puppy where it can not go.

At 3:40 PM, Blogger Majormajor said...

You know JG if Tom would publish my other posts it would really level the playing field.

At 8:20 PM, Blogger woodenman1954 said...

T.P., you are sugar coating Arpaio, his life's work was making life hell for every person he could get his hands on. His prison was more like a concentration camp complete with torture and even murder. Legal or not if you were black or brown you were fair game to Arpaio.

Considering all the mysterious deaths and the tales of the people abused by Arpaio he has led a charmed life. The federal charges against him are just a slap on the wrist and Trump took even that away.

At 12:13 PM, Blogger T. Paine said...

Woodenman, as I said, I don't condone targeting anyone because of their color. That is absolutely and unequivocally wrong if there is no probable cause to do so.

As for Arpaio's prison, I have far less sympathy to that argument. I too had to sleep in a tent out in 120 degree heat in the desert for months and I would have killed to have been fed bologna sandwiches instead of MRE's. The difference was that I volunteered to do so in defending our country.

If there were credible accusations of murder and abuse over all of the years Arpaio was sheriff, how come those charges weren't also brought up against him, sir? With all of the critics he had, I am sure if there was evidence of torture and murder, the ACLU at least, if not the federal justice department under President Obama would have been all over it.

I don't excuse Arpaio's direction to target people simply based on their skin color, but as far as the jail goes, perhaps if more of our prisons were similar in nature, there would be far less folks willing to be stupid in breaking the law. But then again, maybe not...

Years ago, I met a gentleman from some country in western Africa... I don't recall which one now. He made a comment that has stayed with me for twenty years. He said, when I lived back in my country, all that I could ever want was for a roof over my head and three decent meals a day. If I could perhaps also further my education or play some basketball, I would have had everything I desired. Here, in America, these things are all provided to your prisoners.


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