* Erik’s Editorial: The Guilty Parties Who Put American Democracy At Risk In The Name Of Donald Trump

US White House upside down (public domain).

I do not fault stupid people for making the stupid decision to elect Donald Trump in 2016.

I do fault smart people for making stupid decisions. These include:

1. Senators who voted to acquit Donald Trump in his no-witnesses-allowed impeachment trial, including primarily Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell:

* Impeachment of Donald Trump (2020-02-05)

* Mitch McConnell (2020-02-05)

2. Members of the GOP who voted to disenfranchise voters in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin – before, during, and AFTER the 2021 storming of the United States Capitol – including Paul Gosar (AZ-04), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Jody Hice (R–GA-10), Mo Brooks (R–AL-05), Scott Perry (R–PA-10), Josh Hawley (R–MO), and Louie Gohmert (R–TX-01).

* 2021 Storming Of The United States Capitol (2021-01-06)

* 2020 United States Presidential Election Electoral College Count (2021-01-06 – 2021-01-07)

3. Donald Trump’s cabinet, who could have invoked the 25th Amendment to remove POTUS at any time:

* Cabinet Of Donald Trump (2017-01-21 – PRESENT)

4. Social media, including especially Facebook and Twitter, for allowing their social networks to be used as platforms for hate speech.

* Donald Trump On Social Media (2017-01-21 – PRESENT)

5. Mainstream media, including especially CNN (on the left) and Fox News (on the right) for not doing their jobs – asking questions until they get answers – and allowing POTUS to lie unchecked.

* Veracity Of Statements By Donald Trump (2017-01-21 – PRESENT)

6. Lawmakers at all levels, for failing to fix bad laws and for failing to enact good laws. Changes that must be made going forward include:

Limiting POTUS power:

  • Executive order power must be limited.
  • All cabinet members (acting/interim/actual) must be confirmed by Senate.
  • Treaties and tariffs must be the role of Congress so that POTUS cannot engage in trade wars.
  • War Powers Act must be updated to limit POTUS power to deploy the military.
  • Special Counsel Act must be updated to make clear that POTUS cannot fire special counsel.

Writing better and new laws:

  • Impeachment Act of 2021, to define how impeachment is conducted, including the requirement to have witnesses.
  • Follow the lead of The Restatements Of The Law project (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Restatements_of_the_Law) and codify major SCOTUS cases, including especially Roe v. Wade.
  • Fix the Census.
  • Fix immigration.
  • Fix SCOTUS processes, such as limiting appointments to 2 per POTUS with the number of SCOTUS justices fixed at the number of Federal Circuits (currently 13).
  • Election reform, including who is qualified to run for POTUS and that tax forms must be disclosed to do so.

Just to name a few.

Stupid people, bad laws, and lies got us into this mess.

Smart people, good laws, and the truth can get us out of this mess.



Resignation of the Week: Gary Cohn

This week, Donald Trump’s top economic advisor, Gary Cohn, announced his resignation as Director of the National Economic Council. Though Gary Cohn had talked for several months about potentially leaving, his departure still comes as a surprise.

Cohn, a former Wall Street banker, played an integral part in the creation of the tax reform bill passed in late 2017, that provided a bonanza for large corporations. He also supported the rollback of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, commonly known as Dodd-Frank.

Disagreement with Trump Policies

Gary Cohn’s announcement of his resignation came shortly after Trump declared his plan for tariffs on imported steel and aluminum. Cohn had hotly opposed the plan. The new tariffs, which will take effect in about two weeks, will consist of a 25 percent tariff on imported steel, and a 10 percent tariff on imported aluminum. Initially, Trump had wanted to levy the tariffs globally, but has agreed to exempt Canada and Mexico for now.

Gary Cohn, who leaned more to the left than other Trump staffers, disagreed with various Trump policies. In addition to his opposition to Trump’s tariff proposal, Cohn had been against the United States’ pulling out of the Paris Accords. He had also had vocally disagreed with Trump’s response to the violence in Charlottesville, in which Trump stated that there were “good people on both sides.”

Though Gary Cohn will be the 19th Trump staffer to leave the White House, Donald Trump maintains that the churn is perfectly normal, and that there is no chaos in the White House. Earlier on the day of Cohn’s announced resignation, Trump tweeted: “The new fake news narrative is that there is CHAOS in the white house. Wrong! People will always come & go, and I want strong dialogue before making a final decision. I still have some people that I want to change (always seeking perfection). There is no chaos, only great energy!”

“Globalist Gary”

Some speculate that Trump’s remark about “People that I want to change…” may signal that Gary Cohn was forced to resign. Seen as a globalist, Gary Cohn was often derided within the Trump Administration as “Globalist Gary.” Cohn’s position has frequently flown in the face of Trump’s general “America First” policy of economic nationalism.

Indeed, the rise of protectionism, even beyond the United States, gives rise to speculation about Gary Cohn’s departure at this time. According to journalist Charlie Gasparino, Trump called each of his cabinet members into his office and asked if they were for or against the proposed tariffs (thus, whether or not they supported Trump’s policy). Cohn was not able to say yes.

Did Gary Cohn see the Trump tariff order as the last straw, solidifying his decision to resign? Or, after his inability to side with Trump on the steel and aluminum tariffs, was he forced to resign? Whether we see the steady stream of White House departures as chaos, or as normal churn, the White House has a way of swiftly relieving itself of staff members like Gary Cohn, who don’t see eye-to-eye with the President.

Toobin: Cohn Stomached Racism, but Not Tariffs | CNN  [2018-03-07]

Gary Cohn Was Effectively Fired: Gasparino  |  Fox Business  [2018-03-07]