Trump Deplorables Claim God’s Justice Afflicted John McCain

One of the tragedies befalling America today, the gross lack of civility in the public discourse, didn’t start with Donald Trump and his tragic ascension to the White House, it began as a racist response to Americans electing an African American as President. Some Americans may recall that Barack Obama’s election was accompanied by an onslaught of racist and religious attacks by what is now the “alt-rightNazi movement that included evangelicals calling for ‘imprecatory prayers” targeting President Obama and his family.

For the ignorant, imprecatory prayers are biblical appeals to the evangelical god to kill whomever the faithful believe deserve to die a horrendous death.  The nasty evangelical right had no qualms publicly beseeching other “real Americans” to join their appeal to their “loving” god to strike down the President of the United States. It was, beyond doubt, a true representation of precisely what kind of “Christians” populated the conservative movement. Now, despite the evangelical crowd has a champion in the White House, the only thing that changed is the target.

This author had been recreating in the Sierra Nevada wilderness for a week without access to any news and was saddened to learn upon returning to civilization that Senator John McCain was diagnosed with brain cancer. Perhaps it is just a secular humanist thing, but under no circumstance is there ever a reason to celebrate a horrid diagnosis for anyone, much less a patriot who has served his country with honor and distinction throughout his entire adult life. Sadly, that is not the case among Donald Trump’s most rabid alt-right supporters and it is a stark reminder that they are pathetic excuses for human beings that perfectly represent the mindset of their hero in the White House.

It is true that Trump issued a statement, albeit a petty one, about Senator McCain, but it was too little too late after the atrocious comments he made about a true public servant over the last year or so. Remember, Trump claimed that after being shot down over enemy territory, severely injured, and held captive in a North Vietnamese prisoner of war camp for five years, that John McCain was “Not a war hero. He was a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured.”

Trump also likes cowards such as one-hit wonder Ted Nugent who defecated in his own pants and feigned insanity to avoid serving his country when called on. He likes Nugent because Trump is a chickenshit coward who avoided serving his country when called.  According to the vitriolic comments targeting Senator McCain, there are a significant number of Trump’s alt-right supporters who worship the coward in the White House and attacked Senator McCain because he is not a Trump acolyte; something he has in common with every true American patriot.

The attacks on Senator McCain were not solely because he refuses to lick Trump’s boots, but because he is a statesman who set aside party politics and worked with Democrats for the good of the nation throughout his three decades in the Senate. Of course, since 2009 any Republican who failed to toe the teabagger, and now alt-right, line is a traitor; not to America, but to the racist religious alt-right movement.

Many of the comments targeting Senator McCain made reference to the term “cuckservative,” or “cuck” for short. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, “cuckservative” is a portmanteau combining “cuckold” and conservative. The pejorative “aims to depict conservatives who don’t kowtow to ultra-right political views as inept traitors to the conservative base.”

The truly nasty and hate-driven comments targeting Senator McCain, the majority that will not be printed on this page, represent precisely what is plaguing America and how a vile racist and evangelical minority has polluted the nation and decimated any sense of civil discourse. Some of the least offensive alt-right comments about a true American patriot are:

“Any death of a genuine eternal cuck should be celebrated. John McCain’s passing, assuming he passes, will do our race a lot of good and that’s what matters.”

“The last president for McCain will be Trump. There’s some godly justice right there. I’m pretty sure that God is punishing him. God made it pretty clear that he supports New Right now.”

“John McCain is a cuck, and liberals are using his ideological weakness as proof of his decency over Trump.” 

“I have no empathy for my enemies. John McCain is my enemy. I hope it’s painful.”

Mike Cernovich, the epitome of what in street parlance is a punk-ass bitch and considered to be among the most vociferous members of the alt-right took to Trump’s media outlet Twitter to “implicitly defend” the horrid attacks on a lifelong Republican leader and war hero John McCain. According to Cernovich, the hateful alt-right attacks on McCain were exactly what he expects to hear from the adults in America. He wrote:

“I’m all for wishing cancer patients well but am not going to pretend McCain is anything but who he is. This is called being an adult.”

 According to Cernovich, “being an adult” is learning that a Republican leader with a “striking record of military service” has brain cancer and saying:

“He’s a traitor and a psychopath. His interests are of the globalists. They all need to die, faster the better. Then we straighten things out.”

As noted by Alexander Nazaryan over at Newsweek, these attacks on Senator McCain “speak to the utter debasement of civic discourse” in America. And, as alluded to earlier, the debasement did not start with dirty Donald Trump, but since his emergence on the national stage he has made it the norm for his nasty alt-right adherents.

The news that Senator McCain has cancer was sad to hear and although his political leanings were often contrary to that of a secular humanist, he is a patriot and not simply because of his military service. But what is incredibly sad is that there are a significant number of Americans who have no fealty to America, much less their chosen political party because their cowardly hero is in the White House. Worse yet is that they have no sense of common decency, but that too is down to serving the interests of the Rusky-loving criminal occupying a place he should never be allowed to visit, much less reside.

It is difficult to imagine America ever emerging from the depth of depravity it has fallen into because of the religious and racists polluting civil discourse and now the government. And it is crucial to note that this “my way or the highway” conservative approach to governing began in 2009 when the Republican Party made a commitment to vehemently oppose anything contrary to the “ultra-right” political worldview. One can say whatever they want about Senator John McCain’s politics, but they can never say he didn’t work for the good of the nation and the people as he saw fit, including being a statesman and working with Democrats.

One hopes for nothing but the best possible outcome for Senator McCain and not simply because he is a “never-Trumper,” and not because he is a war hero or lifelong public servant. But because he is a human being and a true American;  something no reasonable American would ever begin to consider labeling Donald J. Trump or his filthy alt-right supporters.

 

 

 

Trump Taps Science Skeptic to Oversee Scientific Integrity at USDA

Most human beings in a technologically advanced nation would expect the people in charge of specific agencies to have an extraordinarily high level of expertise related to the job they hold.  No-one in their right mind would expect an expert grave digger to be chosen to lead the Centers for Disease Control, or an avowed pacifist picked to run the Department of Defense, but these are strange times in America and “right minded” does not apply to anyone running the government.

In keeping with his practice of appointing people with no expertise whatsoever in the departments and agencies they intend to lead, Trump picked an avowed science skeptic, Sam Clovis, for the number two position at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). According to the 2008 farm bill, the USDA undersecretary serves as the agency’s “chief scientist” and it specifies that any appointee to the post should be chosen “from among distinguished scientists with specialized training or significant experience in agricultural research, education, and economics.” That 2008 farm bill also makes special note that the undersecretary is “responsible for the coordination of the scientific research, education, and extension activities of the Department.”

In past administrations, going back long before the 2008 farm bill’s specifications, the undersecretary post has been occupied by a “string of individuals with advanced degrees in science or medicine.” Obviously, Trump choosing a science skeptic to oversee and coordinate scientific research is his idea of what it takes to “make America great.”

Naturally, Trump taps a science skeptic who was an ultra right-wing teabagger talk show host and worked as an “advisor to Trump on all things Russia during the presidential campaign.” Sam Clovis, the science-skeptic is the Trump advisor who brought Carter Page into the Trump campaign after a typical Trump-approved vetting; a quick Google search. Page is just one of Trump’s cohorts under investigation by the FBI. But that’s another story unrelated to Clovis’ gross lack of qualifications to pick fruit, much less be undersecretary and “chief scientist” at the USDA responsible for ensuring there is “scientific integrity” at the agency.

The former USDA undersecretary, Catherine Woteki, an acclaimed nutrition scientist explained why the 2008 farm bill required a “distinguished scientist with specialized training” to fill the USDA undersecretary position. Ms. Woteki said:

There’s a huge amount of science that goes into the setting up of the programs, implementation of various policies, and the chief scientist role is to coordinate those policies across the entire department and to represent agricultural science in the decision making that goes on with other departments and is coordinated with the White House science office.”

Clovis should fit right in with Trump’s administration and especially with the Agriculture Department Secretary, Sonny Perdue, who labeled mainstream climate science “so ridiculous and so obviously disconnected from reality.” Not far from Perdue’s appraisal of climate science, Clovis just doesn’t accept climate science as “a thing” and considers himself to be “extremely skeptical.”

Clovis’ qualifications to be the USDA’s chief scientist and ensure scientific integrity at the agency is serving 25 years in the Air Force, teaching college economics for ten years, and running a right-wing talk show. He has “no background in any hard science or in agriculture” and has not “published any work in peer-reviewed scientific or agricultural journals.” But he did work for Trump’s campaign advising him on all things Russia, including the aforementioned recruiting Carter Page.

It is easy to imagine what Clovis will bring to the position when, not if, he is confirmed by the anti-science Republican Senate, but an informed voice, Jessica Huseman at ProPublica, provided a fair estimation of what Clovis will do as “chief scientist” at the USDA.

Ms. Huseman reported that last October when Clovis represented the Trump campaign at the Farm Foundation Forum he told E&E News that the Trump administration is not interested in the impact of climate change on American agriculture. Instead, they will be focusing all their energies on eliminating regulations and boosting trade. As an aside, the American agriculture industry is already suffering trade losses due to the Trump administration’s so-called trade expertise and no amount of deregulation will convince our foreign trading partners to engage with America again; especially with agricultural products.

Trump is bound and determined to put the least qualified human beings in charge of the most important federal agencies whether it was an anti-public school evangelical to run the Department of Education or an anti-environmental protection champion to run the Environmental Protection Agency or an anti-civil rights advocate to run the Department of Justice. Trump seeks out the least qualified people in America to lead important departments and it is just another sign that he has no kind of business acumen. No accomplished and successful business man would ever hire unqualified people to perform even menial tasks, much less to lead a department.

More than incompetence, Trump’s choice of Clovis, like Perdue, is another signal that this administration is Hell bent on attacking science reminiscent of the Dark Age Catholic Church. With Trump in the White House and Republicans controlling all three branches of government, these are the dark ages for America, and dark times for science and research.

Congress to Criminalize Speech Not Supporting Israeli Aggression

 

As some Americans may be aware, the nation of Israel has proceeded with an expanding occupation of Palestinian territories that America tacitly supports while the rest of the civilized world is appalled at the inhumane actions. And, in this particular crusade, inhumane is a gross understatement.

Since America under Trump refuses to pressure Israel into joining the civilized world and stop its encroachment and terrorizing of the Palestinian people, the rest of the world is engaged in a campaign known as BDS to encourage Israel through economic sanctions to change its aggressive  and inhumane ways. Remember, it was just recently that America warned the United Nations Human Rights Commission that if it did not stop, immediately, criticizing Israel for terrorizing the Palestinians, Trump’s America would leave the organization. Trump’s America loves aggression towards innocent and defenseless Muslim populations.

Now, members of Congress are working for Israel to eliminate the First Amendment’s Freedom of Speech provisions for any American who dares support the world’s attempt to bring Israel into compliance with civilized society. The bill currently before Congress is an Israeli-inspired response to any American who supports, calls for, or requests information about the BDS campaign to put economic pressure on Israel “to withdraw from lands it occupied in 1967, end its [illegal] occupation of Palestinian territories, dismantle its illegal settlements in the West Bank, and allow Palestinians in exile to return to their homeland.”

BDS stands for “boycott, divest, and sanction” Israel for its unrelenting militaristic expansion into Palestine. Instead of using their “freedom of speech” to convince other Americans why Republicans think economic sanctions against Israel’s occupation and encroachment is wrong, and why Israel’s takeover of Palestinian land is godly and right, members of Congress supporting the bill want to criminalize opposing views – by abolishing any speech not supporting Israel’s illegal expansion into Palestine.

The so-called “Israel Anti-Boycott Act” is legislation that:

Prohibits Americans from requesting the imposition of any boycott by a foreign country against a country which is friendly to the United States and from supporting any boycott fostered or imposed by an international organization [United Nations], or requesting imposition of any such boycott, against Israel.”

That patently unconstitutional bill prompted the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to send a letter to Congress demanding a halt to legislation “denying freedom of speech” to any American advocating for, or simply “requesting information about,” any kind of boycott of Israel.

If any American does exercise their right to free speech, the bill calls for penalties  including up to “20 years in prison and fines between $250,000 and $1 million;” simply  for advocating for, or even requesting information about, a boycott of the state of Israel.

Some Americans might recall that Republicans went ballistic over an attempt to overturn Citizens United they claimed was a dirty filthy un-American attack on the First Amendment’s free speech provision. In Republicans’ minds, free speech is sacrosanct and cannot be challenged if the speech is in the form of tens-of-millions of corporate dollars for Republican candidates, but it is punishable by serious terms in federal prison and ungodly fines if the speech entails calling for sanctions against Israel.

The bill’s sponsors epitomize hypocrisy on free speech. For example, in 2014 Ted Cruz (R-TX) railed against attempts to overturn Citizens United saying:

“Typically, when Americans hear that members of the Senate are proposing repealing the free speech protections of the First Amendment, the usual reaction is a gasp of disbelief. Could we really have entered a world so extreme that our common ground no longer even includes the First Amendment of the Constitution?”

And in a Wall Street Journal op-ed Cruz wrote:

Speech is more than just standing on a soap box yelling on a street corner. For centuries the Supreme Court has rightly concluded that free speech includes writing and distributing pamphlets, putting up billboards, displaying yard signs, launching a website, and running radio and television ads.”

One of Cruz’s Texas cohorts, Senate Republican Whip John Cornyn, said:

I guarantee that none of my constituents suggested we need to repeal the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.” And then he claimed the overturn Citizens United amendment was:

A vote to silence them. Tell them to sit down, be quiet, we are in charge and in control.”

Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) is also a co-sponsor of the bill to muzzle citizens’ voices and in 2015 joined Cruz and Hatch in railing against overturning Citizens United on Free Speech grounds. He said:

Supporters of this radical proposal apparently believe that freedom itself is the problem. That view is contrary to the most fundamental principles of this republic, and incompatible with a free society. Freedom is not the problem, it is the solution.”

Republican Senator Pat Roberts (KS) concurred with Cruz, Hatch, and Cornyn that overturning Citizens United was an attack on free speech and added that it was an assault on democracy. He said:

In our system of government, all voices have the right to be heard. The First Amendment gives them that right. … We have a system that allows all voices to be heard, even those that oppose the majority. That is not the antithetical to democracy; it is the essence of democracy. So it is time, it seems to me, to stop pretending that allowing more voices to be heard somehow poses a danger just because we don’t like what they are saying.”

Another Republican attacking the attempt to overturn Citizens United, Senator Deb Fischer (NE) actually told her Senate colleagues that:

Over the preceding five weeks visiting constituents, not a single Nebraskan told me to go back to Washington and vote to limit free speech.” She said overturning Citizens United was “gutting the First Amendment and the principles of free speech that have endured since the Bill of Rights was ratified in 1791.” And that “it would actually diminish democratic participation and decrease freedom.”

 Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) complained that overturning Citizens United was tantamount to:

Amending the Bill of Rights. It would amend one of the most important of those rights — the right of free speech. The First Amendment provides that Congress shall make no law abridging freedom of speech.”

Of course Grassley is right; the First Amendment does indeed provide that “Congress shall make no law abridging free speech.” And yet that is precisely what he and the other four co-sponsors of the “Israel Anti-Boycott Act” are calling for because their loyalty to Israel’s inhumanity supersedes their phony respect for the First Amendment.

There are really two lessons for Americans here. First, Republicans only care about the Constitution, or the Bill of Rights, when it serves their purposes. And second, that they have no qualms severely punishing Americans who exercise their First Amendment freedom of speech by daring to oppose Israeli aggression against Palestinians.

Trump’s Voter Commission Does Exactly What Americans Feared

Donald Trump is widely regarded by anyone who has had the unfortunate experience of coming in contact with him as a vindictive piece of work. In particular he has built a reputation of “getting even” with any human being who doesn’t bend to his will or dares challenge anything he does. Billionaire Richard Branson related a story where Trump told him he would move the proverbial heaven and Earth, and spend the rest of his life trying, to destroy the 5 people who failed to “help him,” and he is now out to cause misery to Americans who oppose his corrupt voter suppression “commission.”

There is only a “voter integrity commission” because Trump cannot tolerate the idea that he lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by about 3 million votes. Remember, Trump still claims he lost 3 to 5 million votes to fraudulent (illegal immigrant) voters; a claim that has been so widely and often debunked that even Republicans know Trump is lying. But they also know that Trump’s fragile ego will allow them to go to extreme lengths to launch robust voter suppression tactics based on Trump’s claim and they are moving at breakneck speed to enact legislation restricting the right to vote to their white evangelical base. As of March of this year there were 20 Republican states enacting severe voter suppression laws and using Trump’s claim of “massive voter fraud” as justification.

When Trump tasked Mike Pence and voter-suppression expert Kris Kobach with demanding states hand over all voter data from the past ten years, including highly personal and confidential information, only a fool believed there was not a typical Republicans’ untoward motive behind it.

In fact, even Republican state election officials opposed the “demand” and were not bashful about telling the “commission” to go to Hell, or “go jump in the Gulf of Mexico.” Trump’s response to 46 states refusing to cooperate was that even Republican election officials were afraid the results would show that he, Donald J. Trump, really won the popular vote and won by historically unheard of majorities.

What Trump discovered after foolishly calling for public comments on the request for their personal and private data was that it wasn’t just 46 state election officials who opposed the illegal maneuver, the public went ballistic. And, as if to justify every public commenter’s worst fears that the commission would publicize voters’ sensitive personal information, the commission duly publicized voters’ sensitive personal information.

Pence and Kobach released the contact information, along with some really angry comments, of everyone who responded on the White House website.

As noted by nearly everyone with a pulse, Mike Pence and Kris Kobach’s decision to publish the emails containing the names, phone numbers, home addresses and places of employment of Americans who were concerned that Trump’s  voter integrity commission was a nefarious plot to make such information public was no accident. In fact, there are already reports, and comments on the White House website, that many Americans are “deregistering to vote” to keep their private data out of Pence’s and Kobach’s dirty hands. However, even though the “commission” cannot access their private data from the state election officials, their voter suppression ploy worked by frightening voters to take their names off voter rolls.

What the people probably didn’t know prior to submitting their “public comments” was that now the White House website includes a warning that the “Commission may post such written comments publicly on our website, including names and contact information that are submitted.

One of the commenters actually expressed his fear that the commission’s request for his personal data and identifying information would make him a target. Subsequently, the commenters’ email, replete with his current identifying information including his home address, was published on the White House website.

There was no reason whatsoever to publish the comments, much less the respondents’ personal contact information, except to use the White House website and taxpayer dollars to inform Trump’s hateful supporters of who to harass and intimidate and precisely where to find them. And there is little doubt that Trump acolytes will rush to defend their fascist hero based on a sampling of some of the less brutal comments courtesy of Salon’s Sophia Tesfaye. These are only a few printable “excerpts” from angry Americans sans their email addresses or personal identifying data still on the White House website.

  • Mr. Trump’s claims that millions of fraudulent votes were cast against him is the ravings of an egomaniac who can’t stand to lose
  • I hope and pray that you fail
  • The person reading this email should be ashamed to be supporting this effort.
  • It is obvious that your commission will be using this information, especially voting history, to target people who are likely to vote Democratic, and use various, well-known techniques to suppress as many of their votes as possible. I am a Teddy Roosevelt Republican. He would never condone such un-American behavior
  • P.S. I removed my name from voter rolls. And I’m a Republican!

That last comment about removing their name from voter rolls apparently is of no concern to the “king of voter suppression,” Kris Kobach, and one suspects that indeed was part of his voter suppression plot. Instead of being appalled that the administration’s actions would prompt even one registered voter to abandon participation in the democratic process, Kobach called it a “political stunt,” by a Republican voter no less. Kobach said that no matter that it is glaringly obvious Americans are so “fearful of what he’ll do with their personal information,” like making it public, that they are voluntarily “removing themselves from voter rolls.” The king of voter suppression said:

It could be a political stunt ― people who are trying to discredit the commission and withdrawing temporarily because they are politically active but planning to get back on the voter rolls before the election next November,”

If those voters live in Republican states with harsh voter suppression laws, they may never be allowed to register again; a fact they are likely aware of and one that Kobach knows is a fact. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) didn’t designate Kobach as the king of voter suppression without good cause and it is just one of the reasons why there is such opposition to Trump’s voter integrity commission; that and the fact that even Republicans understand that giving anyone connected with Trump personal information about voters will be used to against them.

If any idiot was confused as to why other Americans, including Republicans, were highly suspicious of what Trump would do with their personal voting and private information, the revelation that his commission revealed the private contact information about commenters opposed to the “commission” should clear up any confusion; including any doubts that the Trump administration is being run by criminal fascists.

Republicans Block Effort to Revoke Jared Kushner’s Security Clearance

 

It has become increasingly obvious that Republicans are about as interested in national security as they are raising taxes 90 percent on their wealthy donors. Oh sure they feigned interest in security when a Democrat was Secretary of State and used a private email server, but they pretended to be interested in a rash of issues because they weren’t in power. However, when a most senior advisor to a Republican in the White House deliberately lied and omitted over 100 contacts with foreign agents on a national security clearance form, including agents that waged cyber warfare against America, even questioning the perjury is a “political stunt.

By now most Americans have at least heard that Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, lied on the first two Standard Form 86 (SF-86) security clearance documents he submitted to earn a high-level security clearance to work in a place he doesn’t belong – the White House.

Kushner was even “inclined” to “revise” a third SF-86 to add over a hundred additional contacts with foreign agents he “forgot” to mention the second time he “revised” his SF-86 clearance. Of course just meeting with foreigners isn’t an issue, but Kushner met with Russian agents actively waging “cyber warfare” against an American institution, and he lied about those meetings at least twice and still has a high security clearance; something House Republicans do not have a problem with.

However, Democrats in the House do take a dim view of committing perjury on a security clearance document and although they are virtually impotent to do anything about it, they made an effort to get a risk to national security out of the Trump administration’s decision making chain.

One amendment introduced by Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) was to the Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations Bill that banned any funds from being used “to issue, renew, or maintain a security clearance for any individual in a position in the Executive Office of the President who is under a criminal investigation by a Federal law enforcement agency for aiding a foreign government.”  Jared Kushner meets that standard of “being under criminal investigation” by a Federal law enforcement agency but Republicans don’t care; that Amendment failed along a party line vote 22-30.

The second amendment sought to revoke the security clearance of any White House staffers who deliberately fail to disclose (lie about) meetings with foreign nationals (agents) or foreign nations (Russia) on the SF-86 questionnaire for national security positions. That amendment, like the first one, was defeated along a party line vote and it is telling that all Republicans are protecting yet another Trump administration actor regardless the threat they pose to national security.

Ms. Wasserman Schulz argued that both amendments were crucial to “safeguard the country’s most sensitive national security information.” Most Americans would agree and likely add that it is just as crucial to safeguard the nation from an administration that knowingly employs several national security risks; and it is a security risk by Trump Sr. to bring in corrupt actors who lie to conceal their contacts with foreign agents.

While the Democrats were attempting to protect national security, Republicans said the amendments were political maneuvers and unnecessary. Texas Republican John Culbertson said both amendments were just political stunts because national security decisions should be left up to the security professionals appointed by Donald Trump. Culbertson said:

The use of funding prohibitions to deny or remove security clearances is just simply a political stunt and unnecessary, because security clearances can already be denied or revoked because criminal conduct.”

No matter what Culbertson says, the national security “professionals” Trump appointed have already revealed they definitely are not “denying or revoking” security clearances for anyone in Trump’s administration despite that there is powerful evidence that there was “criminal conduct.”

According to SF-86 under the heading Penalties for Inaccurate or False Statements, it plainly states:

The U.S. Criminal Code (title 18, section 1001) provides that knowingly falsifying or concealing a material fact is a felony which may result in fines and/or up to five (5) years imprisonment. In addition, Federal agencies generally fire, do not grant a security clearance, or disqualify individuals who have materially and deliberately falsified these forms, and this remains a part of the permanent record for future placements. Your prospects of placement or security clearance are better if you answer all questions truthfully and completely. You will have adequate opportunity to explain any information you provide on this form and to make your comment.” (author bold)

It is noteworthy that under 18 U.S.C. § 1001 a fair number of “notable Americans” have been convicted for “making false statements” including Martha Stewart, Rod Blagojevich, Scooter Libby, Bernie Madoff, and Jeffrey Skilling to name a few.  Republicans or anyone in the Trump administration can never claim that the law is archaic or obscure, or has never been enforced. It has, and it probably would be enforced today if the entire Trump administration wasn’t run by criminals like Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Sessions is not going to prosecute Kushner or make any attempt to deny his security clearance because he also “knowingly falsified and concealed a material fact” on his SF 86 and during sworn testimony before the United States Senate.

These amendments by Democrats are a continuing effort to clear out known national security risks, and felonious “advisors” from the Trump White House and it is crystal clear Republicans are now, and have been, obstructing efforts to protect critical national security secrets. No small number of Democrats have been calling for Kushner’s security clearance to be revoked, or at least suspended. This is particularly true since the revelation that he was in attendance with Trump Jr. and former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort when they met with the Russian lawyer in a clandestine meeting at Trump Tower that Kushner failed to report on his security clearance form.

That latest “revelation” is in addition to Kushner’s meetings with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and the CEO of a Russian state-run bank during the transition.  If, as Republicans claim, criminal conduct is justification for denying or revoking security clearances, and Trump’s national security team or his attorney general refuse to do their jobs, then it is left to Congress to step in – something Democrats did attempt with the two separate amendments that only failed because like Trump, Sessions, Kushner, Trump Jr., and likely the majority of the Trump administration, Republicans are criminals for covering up a federal crime. It makes them co-conspirators in criminal conduct that should send the entire lot of them to a federal penitentiary for up to five (5) years.

Image: Credo

 

Evangelical Says Defund Planned Parenthood And God Will Cure Diseases

While Democrats and Americans inclined toward humanitarianism are appalled at the prospect of tens-of-millions of other Americans losing access to medical care, at least one insane evangelical has a biblical solution. Apparently, Americans should embrace the Republican crusade to deny healthcare to their fellow citizens because under the right godly conditions, there will no longer be a need for any healthcare in America; because god will step up and cure diseases if Republicans abide by one religious right demand.

For rational human beings the concept of an all-powerful, all-seeing, and beneficent sky spirit overseeing the universe with a special interest in planet Earth is sheer absurdity – like all ancient mythology. For non-rational humans, the idea that their “personal god” exists for their benefit and well-being is not only reality, it informs why they believe archaic mythos and why they vote for Republicans. It has always been a mystery why the evangelical faithful never attribute what they perceive as the ills of America to the Republicans they send to rule over them, or why they claim to be “followers of Christ” when they reject each and every one of his teachings.

One of the Jesus’ commandments evangelical voters reject out of hand is the directive to care for the sick and infirm, without conditions. Even though Republicans are on a tear to eliminate healthcare for tens-of-millions of Americans, many of them devout Christians, Republicans still have overwhelming support from the evangelical and born again faithful. Either they want millions of their fellow citizens, including fellow Christians, to suffer and die without healthcare, or they know something the rational demographic is unaware of including that their god has a plan to eliminate any need for healthcare – with one important condition.

This week one of the renowned evangelical fanatics and former Colorado legislators, Gordon Klingenschmitt, informed Americans that his god will do away with humans’ diseases, and the necessity for healthcare in America, if and only if Republicans defund Planned Parenthood. Seriously, according to that kind of evangelical mindset, the only reason there are infirmities and diseases in America is because Planned Parenthood was created. And, that America was at one time disease-free prior to 1973 when the Supreme Court ruled on Roe v. Wade; cancer, epidemics, polio, tuberculosis, and congenital defects were non-existent until women won the right to choose their own reproductive health.

Apparently, prior to the 1970s there were not millions of Americans perishing or being disabled and deformed due to various diseases and epidemics because abortion was illegal and Planned Parenthood did not exist. If one embraces Klingenschmitt’s assertion as true, polio, leukemia, tuberculosis, and cancer are god’s punishment on all humanity throughout history, including millennia before women gained a semblance of control over their own bodies. Now, most people have heard some genuinely absurd claims from the extreme evangelical right, but unlike blaming natural disasters and terror attacks on the LGBTQ community, this malcontent evangelical implies there was no need for healthcare until Planned Parenthood and Roe v. Wade.

Klingenschmitt was speaking to his adherents and confidently stated that he had the perfect solution to what he admitted was “America’s healthcare crisis.” He said:

You know what the solution to America’s healthcare crisis is? Obey the Ten Commandments, stop funding abortion, stop funding child killing and God will heal your diseases, America. The supernatural blessing of healing is available if we stop working with the demonic spirit of murder. If America were to repent for the sin of abortion, then we would receive [God’s] healing and wouldn’t need to rely on healthcare.

Now, Klingenschmitt wouldn’t make insane comments like that if he didn’t have a willing audience breathlessly hanging on his evangelical pronouncements. And there is no doubt whatsoever the bible-toting crowd believes he’s uttering god’s wisdom and it is one of the horrors of a deeply religious, and small, demographic holding sway over the entire government. However, it also reveals the depth of the stupid endemic in the evangelical conservative movement.

Even the least intelligent American would wonder why, if Klingenschmitt is uttering god’s word, there have been myriad diseases, plagues, epidemics and health defects throughout human history if America is only suffering due to the late 20th Century existence of Planned Parenthood or Roe v. Wade. For dog’s sake, even stupid evangelicals should be asking Klingenschmitt why their god didn’t step up and save their diseased and dying kin when they ardently opposed women’s choice, or before Planned Parenthood or Roe v. Wade came into existence. And why would the evangelical god punish an entire nation, including the evangelical faithful, with plagues, epidemics and disease just because Planned Parenthood exists? But the faithful will never ask those questions out of fear of being branded apostates.

Of course Klingenschmitt, like every religious Republican, is just instilling fear into the evangelical population to not only eradicate Planned Parenthood and women’s rights, but to convince the faithful there is no cause for concerned that Republicans intend on eliminating their healthcare.  After all, according to Klingenschmitt, if Republicans defund Planned Parenthood, then Republicans can deny tens-of-millions healthcare without any adverse consequences because god.

The terrible tragedy is that there will be a significant number of the faithful who believe their health issues only exist because women have a semblance of control over their reproductive health. And when Republicans do defund Planned Parenthood and take healthcare away from the faithful, the religious Republicans will trot out another reason disease, epidemics and plagues are killing off Americans because god is not going to be curing diseases.

The United States Is Run By A Criminal Organization

Once upon a time America was renowned as “a nation of laws.”  Most Americans comprehend that no matter if they like or dislike certain laws, they are in place to protect the general population and the security of the federal government. Republicans generally cannot comport laws because they prevent their wealthy donors from fleecing the population and destroying the environment, among many other atrocities. But over the past year or so, Republicans have not only violated laws regularly, they have broken other laws to cover their criminality with no expectation of ever being brought to justice, with good reason.

A couple of days ago Howard Dean said what a few Americans already know after six months of the Trump administration; “A criminal enterprise is running the country now.” Mr. Dean said the people will never get the truth out of Trump and he is spot on; pathological liars never tell the truth. However, it is not just Trump who is a criminal liar, it is the entire Republican Party and they are just as culpable as Trump for violating an increasing number of laws; the least of which is collusion to conceal crimes against the people and the United States.

Mr. Dean said of Trump:

He doesn’t tell the truth. Everybody knows he doesn’t tell the truth. Even his supporters know he doesn’t tell the truth. But they like him anyway. I think at this point, Trump is Trump. He’s going to lie. He’s going to do all these things he does. And the real savior for democracy is going to be Robert Mueller. He’s going to find out what the truth is.

Whether or not Special Counsel Robert Mueller can “save democracy” and prosecute the criminals is highly doubtful, although he likely will find out what the truth is. The hurdle for Mueller is the criminal posing as the nation’s top law enforcement official, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and the Republicans in Congress that are going to great lengths to protect their powerful criminal organization.

It is a depressing prospect, but Americans have to face facts that with a Justice Department under sway of a criminal, and a criminal Congress complicit in covering up the administration and its own criminal activities, the chances of holding any of the felons to account is slim to none. It is just what happens when criminals have total control over every part of America’s government and criminal justice system.

It is getting to the point that Americans have to come to grips with the reality that everyone in the Trump administration is corrupt, and that the GOP is fine with a criminal administration running the country as long as they are entrenched in the organization. The latest sign that Republicans support their crime boss and his lieutenants was no outrage over a slew of revelations that most, if not all, of Trump’s cabinet and inner circle committed felony perjury on federal national security forms. Yesterday, the nation’s top law enforcement official, bible-thumper Jeff Sessions, finally acquiesced to a federal court order and handed over documents that were fully redacted.

Sessions, like Trump’s son, his son-in-law, and several insiders deliberately omitted meeting with foreign players on their Standard Form 86 (SF86); the federal document required to obtain a national security clearance. Reports are that Kushner omitted over 100 meetings with foreigners leading him to revise the original SF86 three times. Sessions had resisted a freedom of information act request (FOIAR) to hand over a copy of his SF86 that he lied on and prompted a federal judge to order him to produce the document. Session did finally release the form a day after the Judge’s deadline, but he may as well have not turned over any document  at all; the form he did release was completely redacted.

Of course Sessions handed over a veritable blank document; the FOIR was to determine if he lied on the SF 86 about “all communications Sessions has had with any official of the Russian government.” Remember, then-attorney general designee Sessions committed felony perjury in front of the United States Senate during his confirmation hearing to be the nation’s top law enforcement official. A crime the Republican Congress pretended never happened; but why should they make an exception for just one of Trump’s criminal lieutenants. In total there were five of Trump’s cabinet nominees who committed perjury under oath. And even after their crimes were exposed Republicans in Congress pretended perjury wasn’t really a crime; just an inconvenient and persistent memory lapse.

As Heather ‘Digby’ Parton explained in a Salon article, Republicans were well aware of Russia’s hacking and criminal aid to Trump beginning in late 2015. According to Reuters, the Republican leaders in Congress, the so-called Gang of Eight, not only benefitted from Russian interference in the election like Trump, they never said a word about a foreign adversary committing cyber warfare against the United States and there is a sick reason why. Congressional Republicans used information gleaned from that “Russian cyber warfare attack” in some Republicans’ 2016 campaigns for Congress. Any common American caught receiving stolen property would be summarily arrested and tried in a court of law, but in Trump’s criminal enterprise Republicans are above the law.

Ms. Parton also noted that during a conversation between Republican congressional leaders, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) told a “roomful of Republican leaders” that he knew Trump and another Republican was being paid by Vladimir Putin; a story confirmed by the Washington Post. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan quickly shepherded the assembled Republicans away from the media’s prying ears and pretended nothing was wrong; making him as much a criminal as any other Trump administration culprit.

As Howard Dean said, Special Counsel Robert Mueller will get to the truth in due time, but there is a monumental issue over whether he has any prosecutorial power whatsoever. That task normally falls to the Department of Justice and the nation’s top law enforcement official; in this instance it is bible-toting criminal liar Jeff Sessions. And the Republican Congress is not going to do anything because they are just as guilty for covering up certain cases of felony perjury and being aware and beneficiaries of Russia’s attack on America’s democracy.

America is still a nation of laws, but with a criminal enterprise (entire Republican movement) running the country, those laws only apply to regular Americans. The people shouldn’t get too excited at the weekly revelations that yet another Trump administration criminal was exposed, or think that there is any law enforcement or prosecutorial agency willing to stop the criminals. Because although America is a nation of laws with a robust criminal justice system, the criminals are running more than the government, they run the criminal justice system like they run Congress and the White House.

h/t HeatherDigbyParton/Salon

DeVos Embraces Misogynists “To Advance God’s Kingdom” Against Women

Anyone remotely familiar with the Christian bible, or the evangelical faith, is aware the religious mythology is as steeped in misogyny as it is brutal and deadly punishment for non-compliance to its edicts. In fact, nearly all religions are misogynistic in varying degrees, but “all religions” aren’t the purview of public school enemy Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. She is a dyed-in-the-wool evangelical whose stated goal in decimating public education is using her cabinet level position to “advance god’s kingdom.”

Since advancing her evangelical god’s kingdom has to include advancing the bible’s misogynistic dogma, it was no surprise that DeVos reached out and invited to some decidedly misogynistic men’s groups, replete with accused rapists, for a meeting at the Department of Education; apparently for misogynists’ guidance on how best to deconstruct as much of Title IX as possible in as short amount of time as possible. The misogynists know this is the best chance they have to turn back the clock on women’s rights and no better advocate for their cause than an evangelical fanatic with a powerful cabinet position than DeVos.

Title IX is a federal law as part of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 that states:

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”    

It is noteworthy that this is the second time DeVos “reached out” to evangelicals to address their biblically-informed discriminatory needs. The first time was less than three weeks ago when she invited, commiserated, and pledged support for evangelical anti-LGBTQ hate groups as part of her effort to “advance god’s kingdom.” Having assured the religious that she will use the Department of Education to assist their anti-LGBTQ discriminatory lust, she turned her attention to the men’s misogyny clubs.

There is little doubt that men’s misogyny clubs believes DeVos will aid them in putting women in their place as defined by the Christian bible; in subjection to a man’s will. It is apparent that DeVos wants to help the misogynists because they have been overtly critical of Title IX policies with a particularly rigorous bent toward those enacted to help colleges and universities staunch the epidemic of campus rape. The policies the “National Coalition for Men” want eliminated were put in place by real President, Barack Obama because although he is a Christian, he understands the need to protect women on college campuses from sexual assault.

The National Coalition for Men has been around since the 1970s as part of the so-called “men’s rights” movement. And like the name suggests, the coalition exists solely to promote misogynistic ideals and wage war against women and their struggle for equality. Obviously, women wanting equal rights is one of many mortal sins among the evangelical movement.

For an example of the group’s intentions and glaring animus towards women in general, and their fight for equal rights, on the group’s North Carolina website it offers legal guidance for rapists and publishes photographs of rape victims claiming they are liars. Of course the tactic serves one purpose; to warn rape victims that if they report an attack and rape, they will be publicly besieged, exposed and intimidated. The message to women is clear: if you are attacked and brutally raped, you stay silent or face more attacks from the men’s rights movement.

For an idea of the mindset of  the “men’s misogyny club,” five years ago it gave its overwhelming endorsement and support for the Republican House version of the Violence Against Women Act because it eliminated protections for the LGBTQ community. It has also been “lawsuit happy” any time it notices an event organized specifically for women.

For example, it sued a strip club for allowing women in free during a “ladies night” promotion, as well as suing a company for not allowing men to attend an event organized to assist women’s networking. The “coalition” president, Harry Crouch, regularly lashes out at women for surviving domestic abuse that he claims is always their fault. He also vehemently defended former football player Ray Rice after he knocked his then-fiancée unconscious in an elevator and dragged her out like so much refuse. According to Crouch:

If she hadn’t aggravated him, she wouldn’t have been hit. They [women] would say that’s blaming the victim. But I don’t buy it.”

There is a good reason the National Coalition for Men and several other anti-women’s groups were invited to meet with DeVos; she appears more than willing to rescind the Title IX protections for sexual assault survivors.

When she sat in her Senate confirmation hearing and lied like a good evangelical, she said it “would be premature” for her to commit to upholding the federal protections for women. She claimed her reluctance is based on “conflicting opinions” about the need to protect women on college campuses from sexual assault. Obviously the “conflicting opinions” include those of the misogynist men’s groups with glaring animosity towards women; especially “those” women who believe they have a right to equality in education, or wages, or voting rights, or the right not to be raped at all, much less with veritable impunity.

There is also hope among the misogynists that DeVos will do their bidding because she has made donations totaling $25,000 to another anti-woman’s group, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) that regularly publishes articles “dismissive of sexual assault survivors.” One article stated:

Much of the feminist ‘war on rape’ has conflated sexual assault with muddled, often alcohol-fueled, sexual encounters that involve miscommunication.”

It is a typically male rape culture ploy to excuse sexual attacks, and as far as “involving miscommunication;” that is code for the attacker not accepting the word “no, please stop, don’t rape me.”

No matter what DeVos’ particular religious bent might be, it is abominable that she is using her cabinet position to “legitimize” hate groups whether it is anti-LGBTQ hate or misogynist groups fervently dedicated to “defending rapists, attacking female victims of sexual assault, and promoting the conspiracy theory that domestic violence is exaggerated.” But that abomination is exactly what the hateful evangelicals who put Trump in the White House expected as remuneration for their votes. Now with an evangelical monster like DeVos running the Education Department, those abominations are only going to get more ardently biblical; something anyone familiar with the Christian bible knows will be brutal.

Image: Elizabeth Brockway/Daily Beast

Stupid Wins As Majority of GOP Say Education Is Ruining America

 

One of the benefits to Republicans in sitting back and allowing Russia to install their party’s standard bearer in the White House was successfully dividing America; it has been a regular goal and campaign tactic of the GOP since Reagan. The GOP has pitted its supporters against any and all groups that aren’t religious, white or wealthy for a few decades. And, Trump has done his part in driving a wedge between his religious racist acolytes and every other demographic in America; it’s safe to say divisiveness and animosity is about the only thing dumb Donnie’s accomplished since that damn dark day he announced his candidacy and incited every stupid bigot to attack everything crucial to a functioning democracy.

Of course by now one or two semi-intelligent Americans are cognizant that a free press (media for you morons) is critical to democracy; something even George W. Bush admitted since Trump began his fascist attack on the media. However, there is another integral aspect necessary for a successful democracy that everyone from Founding Father Thomas Jefferson to Winston Churchill expressed as some iteration of this simple sentiment:

The cornerstone of democracy rests on the foundation of an educated electorate.”

At this juncture in American history with a half-wit White House occupant leading a political movement dedicated to anti-intellectualism as fervently as they are evangelical fundamentalism, only a fool would argue that Republicans in general and Trump in particular support democracy.

That being the case, the current administration certainly hates the very idea of an “educated electorate” and it informs the current Republican crusade to destroy public education in favor of inculcating archaic religious dogmata to keep the public stupid and Republicans in power. As the results of a new Pew Research Center poll reveal, Republicans are winning the war on intelligence and intellectualism because a majority of their number ardently perceive education, especially higher education, as more dangerous than the media. They also believe that education is bad for America, similarly to Trump’s assertion that the United States Constitution is “really bad for Americans.

This increasing animus toward education is a result of both Trump and the conservative movement’s “long game of denigrating U.S institutions to reshape political discourse” into a partisan divide between the stupid and the informed. Only an idiot can’t see that the stupid is winning by a wide margin based on the support Republicans enjoy as they deconstruct America, attack democracy, and elevate the rich and the religious as “real Americans.”

According to the Pew Poll, in a not-so-stunning reversal from less than two years ago, a majority of Republicans are certain that colleges and universities have had a decidedly “negative impact” on America. The poll reported that “fifty-eight percent [of Republicans] say that colleges are having a negative effect on the way things are going in the country.” Among Democrats and left-leaning independent voters, 72 percent still claim that “colleges and universities have a positive effect on the nation.” Not surprising, about the same number of Republicans (73 percent) believe that Wall Street, banks, financial institutions, and evangelical churches have a decidedly positive impact on the nation.

What that means is that Wall Street and banks that decimated the economy less than a decade ago are substantially more popular among Republican voters than colleges whether it is Stanford, Harvard, or the University of Toledo. Exactly a year-and-a-half ago, 54 percent of Republicans said colleges and universities had a positive impact on the direction of the country. It was exactly a year-and-a-half ago that Trump began his crusade to deconstruct democracy.

As the Pew poll demonstrated, this sudden antipathy toward higher education is a stark departure from just over a year ago; about the time Trump began his attack on intelligence whether it was making up his own facts or blatantly lying and getting pissed that the media calls him on it.

One of the reasons Republicans hate colleges and universities is their claim that institutions of higher education are “bastions of liberal indoctrination.” Liberal indoctrination is Republican code for critical thinking, not adhering to religion and not embracing anti-democratic conservative policies.  In fact, it is no coincidence that since Trump and conservatives attacked what they call “the scourge of political correctness” they have ramped up their vicious attacks on the very institutions that defend the democratic diversity of voices among informed students.

For example, just recently Arizona Republicans threatened to “cut funding from public institutions that offer courses and events that are designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group,” or if they advocate for “solidarity” among various ethnic, racial, religious or gender groups. Add to that Trump’s threat to “defund” the University of California at Berkeley because students exercised their constitutional rights of free speech and peaceable assembly protesting the appearance of a seriously nasty right-wing “provocateur.”

As noted in a Salon article, conservatives have always attacked academia on the general principle that it is anti-American for any institution to promote intelligent inquiry and critical thinking, but since those institutions are “increasingly filled with members of marginalized communities” Republican attacks are beginning to resonate with racist, bigoted, and religious Republicans; a fact not lost on Republicans dependent on rank stupidity and hate to stay in power. Unfortunately, Republicans are taking preemptive steps to shut down dissent at college campuses now that their base believes higher learning is destroying America.

Last month, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) convened a hearing titled “Free Speech 101: the Assault on the First Amendment on College Campuses.” It is perfectly fine for ultra-right wing maniacs to exercise their free hate speech, but the student protestors are not extended the same courtesy. In fact, last month Wisconsin Republicans passed a bill allowing college administrators to expel students if they dare disrupt right-wing speakers.

It is important to reiterate that about a year-and-a-half ago, 54 percent of all Republicans claimed that higher education, colleges and universities, had a positive effect on the nation. One doesn’t have to reiterate to anyone exactly what happened about a year-and-a-half ago and in precisely the same fashion that conservatives turned against “the media,” they turned against colleges and universities. What is historical, and a damn frightening prospect, is that all tyrannical fascist dictators began their reign of terror by attacking the media and institutions of higher learning.

Republicans have always depended on “stupid” Americans to stay in power, and it is bad enough they are on a tear to dismantle public education and replace it with for-profit private religious schools.  But is it simply atrocious that their crusade against higher education is bearing fruit among their idiot supporters – another sign that America is devolving rapidly into a barbaric uncivilized society without a functioning government.

Anyone who doesn’t believe it should be aware that nations with a better-educated population have better and more responsive governments simply because voters think critically, ask politicians the right questions, and call them out if they lie. It is precisely why Republican politicians want to destroy public education and why their ignorant sap supporters think higher education is bad for America. It is another bad sign for America, its people, and its democracy.

 

Despite Trump’s Denial, Sea Level Rise is Drastically Accelerating

While the rest of the civilized world is frantically taking steps to staunch the existential threat to humanity due to global climate change, America is ignoring one of its most devastating effects that pose a very serious threat to both of its expansive coastlines. It is noteworthy that just one of the primary reasons the rest of the civilized world despises Donald J. Trump is due to his unilateral exit from the Paris Climate Accord; an exit he predicates on the 12th century belief that science is of Satan the Devil.  It doesn’t matter how advanced or developing the rest of the world’s nations are, they understand firsthand how crucial a concerted global effort is to at least slow global warming to save the people;  not the planet. Earth will always repair man’s damage, it just may take a couple of centuries according to scientists.

There was some incredibly bad news for the Earth’s population, especially those living in close proximity to coastal areas, this week that was generally ignored due to the Earth-shattering importance of Donald Trump’s social media activity. Apparently, the American media is well aware that people are too stupid to comprehend something as simple as sea level rise, so they hew closely to bombastic clickbait stories that sell ad space – like Trump’s tweets.

According to a new study in Nature Climate Change, “global sea level rise jumped 50 percent” over the past  15 years; the most recent period that data are available. The study revealed that the alarming and unprecedented melting of Greenland ice sheets is one of the “major new contributors” to sea level rise. In the late 1990s it only accounted for less than 5 percent of sea level rise, but in 2014 it was responsible for well over a quarter of the increase.

If that isn’t bad enough news for the hundreds-of-millions of human beings living in coastal areas, scientists that have been monitoring an enormous iceberg nearly the size of Delaware reported this week it “is poised to detach from one of the largest floating ice shelves in Antarctica and float off into the sea.”

Scientists, including the atmospheric and oceanic professionals under attack by the Trump administration, used satellite measurements and tidal gauges to provide an accurate measure of the impending disaster for the Earth. And it is noteworthy to mention that no part of the Earth has seen the “particularly intense acceleration of sea level rise” more than the United States’ Eastern seaboard.

The study noted that this is particularly dangerous for Virginia and North Carolina where measurements revealed the sea is rising  in those areas “three times more quickly that the worldwide average.” The rise along the East Coast is not all down to melting ice sheets and icebergs though, although it does account for over a quarter of the damage.

Some other contributors are “sinking land masses due to an increase in ground water removal” as a result of severe drought conditions brought on by global climate change and water theft by the fossil fuel industry and big agriculture; both industries that support Republican opposition to battling climate change.

Not that stupid Americans would understand the complexities of ocean currents or how they contribute to weather patterns, climate change and increasingly severe weather events, oceanographers reported that the “water level is higher in those areas than elsewhere.” The scientists also noted that the additional freshwater pouring into the North Atlantic from that Greenland ice melt is “accelerating that dynamic” affecting America’s East Coast. It is worth noting that the East Coast, especially around Virginia and North Carolina, is home to a substantial Naval presence and major shipping ports spanning the entire Eastern seaboard.

A professor of oceanography at Old Dominion University who did not take part in the study or any part of the reporting, Larry Atkinson explained:

This new evidence of accelerating rates is concerning to us as we try to advise local cities and regions on what they’re going to have deal with.”

Although most Americans are ignorant of rudimentary physics, it is worth noting that the greatest factor driving the dangerous rise in sea level is “thermal expansion.” What thermal expansion means in simple terms is that matter at the molecular level changes shape, area, and volume in response to temperature change.   What that means for sea level rise is that as the oceans warm, the sea water takes up more space (expands).

According to “the Fifth Assessment Report” by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, that “thermal expansion” of sea water “accounts for up to 55 percent of the global sea level rise.” The melting glaciers and ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica account for up to 35 percent of sea level rise and like expanding oceans, those rapid melting ice sheets are only due to “the Earth’s higher land and water temperatures resulting from anthropogenic climate change.

Regardless what dumb Don Trump says, global climate change is real and it is a result of man pouring greenhouse gases, like methane and carbon dioxide, into the atmosphere. Americans living in the proximity of coastal areas can rest assured that when they are forced to relocate due to rising seas that America is as responsible, if not more so, than other industrial nations, except maybe China. However, at least China is moving forward to combat climate change while America with a corrupt clown in the White House pretends it is a joke.

Image: TheInsider