Another Reason To Reject Kavanaugh

Much, if not most of the opposition to Brett Kavanaugh, revolves around his obvious antagonism to Roe v. Wade. 

Most people’s arguments for and against Roe center on abortion. But that really isn’t what the ruling protects. The issue isn’t whether or not a woman should terminate a pregnancy–it is about who gets to make that decision. Judges who want to overrule Roe believe that government–not the pregnant woman– should have that authority, that the personal autonomy protected by the Bill of Rights can and should be limited when a majority of legislators see fit to substitute their judgment for that of the individual.

The implications of that position are what keep me up at night.

If you look carefully at the legal and philosophical arguments advanced by opponents of Roe (rather than the “pro-life” demonstrators who see it as simply a question of abortion, which they oppose) you will find a disquieting thread of authoritarianism. These are the judges and organizations who consistently favor the exercise of power–government over citizens, major corporations over consumers, the status quo over potential disruption.

That tendency to weigh in on the side of established authority is subject to one notable  caveat: authority is only right when it is “their guys” who are wielding authority. (They are like the Christian theocrats who are critical of the Taliban, not because individuals should have the right to form and hold their own beliefs, but because the Taliban is imposing the “wrong” beliefs.)

People who know him have remarked on Kavanaugh’s extreme partisanship. As his record has emerged, his strong bias for authority is becoming clearer.

(CNN)Judge Brett Kavanaugh two years ago expressed his desire to overturn a three-decade-old Supreme Court ruling upholding the constitutionality of an independent counsel, a comment bound to get renewed scrutiny in his confirmation proceedings to sit on the high court.

Speaking to a conservative group in 2016, Kavanaugh bluntly said he wanted to “put the final nail”in a 1988 Supreme Court ruling. That decision, known as Morrison v. Olson, upheld the constitutionality of provisions creating an independent counsel under the 1978 Ethics in Government Act — the same statute under which Ken Starr, for whom Kavanaugh worked, investigated President Bill Clinton. The law expired in 1999, when it was replaced by the more modest Justice Department regulation that governs special counsels like Robert Mueller.
Kavanaugh has often embraced the “unitary executive theory” beloved by Dick Cheney. An embrace of that theory by the Court would mean that an independent prosecutor–who is structurally part of the Executive Branch–would always serve only at the “pleasure of the President.”

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh once questioned the correctness of the 1974 high court decision that forced then-President Richard Nixon to turn over secret White House tape recordings and led to his resignation…..The 1974 United States v. Nixon ruling unanimously rejected the president’s claim that executive privilege protected him from having to release the tapes to a special prosecutor…

Kavanaugh said the president, not the attorney general, is the country’s “chief law enforcement officer.”

These views didn’t prevent him from relatively enthusiastic participation as a lawyer working with Ken Starr during Starr’s investigation of President Clinton. But then, Clinton was a Democrat.

This preference for an expansive view of Presidential power ( when Republicans are exercising that power) raises some fairly serious concerns. If government has the authority to overrule intensely private decisions about procreation, and if the President’s authority over that government cannot be subjected to independent investigation, what other decisions is the President free to impose on the citizenry? What happens to other important checks and balances? The rule of law?

Yesterday, the New York Times editorial board highlighted several of Kavanaugh’s previous rulings in an editorial warning that his confirmation would hamper government’s ability to protect citizens against corporate overreach and would further expand the gap between rich and poor.

In 2012, Judge Kavanaugh wrote an appeals court opinion striking down an Environmental Protection Agency rule that required upwind states to reduce power plant emissions that cause smog and soot pollution in downwind states, a decision that was later struck down by a 6-to-2 majority of the Supreme Court. And in 2016, he wrote an opinion that said the leadership structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was unconstitutional because Congress decided that the president could only fire its director for cause. The full appeals court reversed that portion of his decision in January.

The editorial had much more–and the more we learn, the worse Kavanaugh looks.


  1. I have read numerous editorials detailing why Kavanaugh shouldn’t be confirmed to SCOTUS, all of which I agree with. The sad truth is that all the points being made about how disastrous he would be are the exact reason the GOP want him there. No eloquently worded essay detailing his rulings is going to change the minds of the conservative members of Congress. They simply highlight reasons for his appointment.

    Sadly, the Supreme Court has become a partisan arm of the executive branch. Something the current administration wants to extend. The only hope is to elect a more balanced and fair-minded Congress that will vote to keep the courts free from political maneuverings. Should the Republicans find themselves in the minority after 2018 mid-terms, I’m sure they will suddenly want the same thing. (See Merrick Garland.)

  2. Did Kavanaugh graduate from one of the law schools that has been infiltrated by the Koch’s? They began funding law schools decades ago with the intention of teaching students to favor corporate power over citizens.

    If Kavanaugh is appointed to the Supreme Court I can’t even imagine the celebrations that will take place within the White House and corporate executives/boards across the nation. It will indeed be a very sad day for our country.

  3. Yesterday, Marv wrote that “winning” is the most important concept. As Albert Einstein pointed out, that concept of winning is causing all our problems. In fact, everybody on this blog noted it but used different words.

    As we all have learned, our society (capitalism) is all about who wins. Albert very succinctly wrote:

    “I have now reached the point where I may indicate briefly what to me constitutes the essence of the crisis of our time. It concerns the relationship of the individual to society. The individual has become more conscious than ever of his dependence upon society. But he does not experience this dependence as a positive asset, as an organic tie, as a protective force, but rather as a threat to his natural rights, or even to his economic existence. Moreover, his position in society is such that the egotistical drives of his make-up are constantly being accentuated, while his social drives, which are by nature weaker, progressively deteriorate. All human beings, whatever their position in society, are suffering from this process of deterioration. Unknowingly, prisoners of their own egotism, they feel insecure, lonely, and deprived of the naive, simple, and unsophisticated enjoyment of life. Man can find meaning in life, short and perilous as it is, only through devoting himself to society.

    The economic anarchy of capitalist society as it exists today is, in my opinion, the real source of the evil. We see before us a huge community of producers the members of which are unceasingly striving to deprive each other of the fruits of their collective labor—not by force, but on the whole in faithful compliance with legally established rules. In this respect, it is important to realize that the means of production—that is to say, the entire productive capacity that is needed for producing consumer goods as well as additional capital goods—may legally be, and for the most part are, the private property of individuals.”

    You see, our systems go against our basic instincts. The courts have lost the sincere effort of justice-seeking because the system itself promotes “winning”. The billionaires don’t give millions to public officials to administer “justice for all”. They give them money hoping it will allow them to win so they can cast votes and promote policies which benefit their beliefs.


    At all costs…

  4. Re Roe..
    If our government has the power to say one may NOT have an abortion,
    it also has the power to say who MUST have an abortion

  5. Kavanaugh was a successful academic student and may be a fair judge among appellate court members where his views are moderated by up to eight colleagues, but he hauls baggage that seems to be, and should be anathema to our readers, disqualifying him to all Americans. He is closed-minded on those issues destined to be argued before SCOTUS, those issues that have been imprinted on his brain from home, school and church, affecting negatively those ultimate decisions altering the lives and fortunes of arguably considerably more than half of our citizenry, decisions that in this case would be rendered by one man alone with input, but without moderation of the entire court en banc. Add to that he was nominated by Donald Trump whose presidency is arguably illegitimate, soon to be hobbled in November and out of office in 2020 if not before. While we may unseat Trump we would be saddled for the lives of most of us if Kavanaugh is confirmed. Protect and defend the Constitution for ALL citizens including those yet unborn. Defeat any GOP Trump nomination. We are stuck with Gorsuch; want to approve more? Why? We have plenty of other qualified citizens and appeals court experience is not required by the Constitution.
    Reminder: VOTE to overturn the Congress in November, our first step.

  6. Todd,

    “Yesterday, Marv wrote that “winning” is the most important concept. As Albert Einstein pointed out, that concept of winning is causing all our problems. In fact, everybody on this blog noted it but used different words”

    The statement that I made was comparing running competition to politics. My statement was: “I only won by a few steps. Nevertheless, just like in politics, winning is everything.”

    I’ll stick to what I said. Even if I’m accused being an enemy of Albert Einstein. So you want to take me on. You should have thought twice about doing that. I don’t know of anyone who has been successful at doing that. Do you?

    With you, LOSING IS EVERYTHING. You want the DEMOCRATS TO LOSE AT ANY COST. Even at the cost of democracy. Isn’t that right, Todd? That’s the only way you can go forward with your EXTREME LEFT-WING AGENDA, as Vernon has aptly called it….. STALINIST.

    Grow up!

  7. Don’t worry. McConnell is planning to limit access to Kavanaugh’s writings from the time he worked for “W”, so we won’t have to hear more astoundingly unconstitutional ideas from him until after he is confirmed.

  8. Wasn’t the American Revolution in part a rebellion against unitary authority? Wasn’t the constitution designed to restrict the power of any one branch of government?

  9. From my JD niece:

    “Trump reflects all the worst things about American culture:
    Fast-food obesity,
    Insatiable greed,
    Extreme selfishness,
    Gross entitlement,
    Inability to discern any truth that is inconvenient,
    RACISM, Christo-fascism, etc., etc., etc..

    That is why he enjoys such strong support among his base —
    People who support him share many/all of his traits but few have his wealth.
    They will be dying of treatable illnesses; they can’t afford medical care.
    Universal Medical care will go down in history.
    Republicans will slash their Social Security so they will be dining on canned catfood.
    Such fools are beyond pathetic.
    I pity them but also feel enormously angry at them for their complicity in damaging, perhaps irreparably, the greatest government and democracy that the world had ever known.”

  10. To patmcc: not only choosing those to require abortions, but also sterilization. We’ve done that as well.

  11. So we watch the play as it is being written before our eyes – and ‘oh wait for the spectacular finish!’.., it makes no sense; any of it. We run around talking about this or that symptom and forget the cancer that is the cause of it all. Of course this man is not qualified to be what most consider a ‘justice’ he is a plant by a maniac to get himself later excused from crimes! We know that. But why is the maniac still there and those that support him? That is my focus, and my question. How do we really push the reset: or is it too late and that is why the maniac is still there?

  12. “Another Reason To Reject Kavanaugh”…and the list went on.

    The very reasons he is not qualified for a lifetime appointment to SCOTUS are the very reasons the Republicans want him appointed but will not state them publicly. Kavanaugh’s appointment will aid the current SCOTUS to move us back to those “thrilling days of yesteryear” when, in 1970 at age 34 with five children and severe “female problems”, the necessary surgery (tubal ligation) required my husband’s approval and agreement with his signature on a medical document. The surgery, as so many others needed by women, had nothing to do with abortion but the ultimate choice was not up to them…or their physicians.

  13. Where are the promised Trump IRS Tax Returns?

    Has Bob Mueller captured their contents by subpoena to the IRS (assuming that’s possible)?

    If so, we will learn something about them down the road when U.S. versus Trump unfolds in court(s).

  14. Lest we forget that this controversy over Kavanaugh began with the retirement of Kennedy…whose son is embroiled in a Deutschebank/Trump money laundering situation. This “appointment” could be a quid pro quo as well as a firewall against Trump being indicted.

    Also, Kavanaugh’s main statement about why a sitting President shouldn’t be liable and above the law is that he BELIEVES that the government would cease to function. If it weren’t so pathetic, it’d be a roll-on-the-floor laugh line. The government functioned just fine when Nixon was in the hot seat. The government functioned just fine when Clinton was pilloried by Gingrich and that generation of Republican idiots. That’s part of the beauty of the Constitution: it lets the other branches work while the executive is “distracted”. The rest of the executive branch continues to work. The 25th Amendment also allows a non-functional President to be replaced by the Vice-President.

    So, Kavanaugh exposes himself as a true fascist and authoritarian judge from the jump. Perfect for Trump’s protection. The other nagging question is, would the other Justices all be inclined to agree with him? I’d bet that Alito, Thomas and Gorsuch would follow the path of fascism along with Kavanaugh. In their mindless adherence to the capitalist/Koch/Christian dogma of authority, they are prisoners of monsters.

  15. And what are We The People to do if Trump, ushered out of office by our Constitution (as amended) is nominated in 2021 for a lifetime seat on SCOTUS, by of all people “President” Pence, the failed Apologist Champion of RFRA?
    Don’t you know Trump is grooming himself for that glory that he knows is possible because his successor, cowardly Pence will owe it to him?
    Haven’t you noticed that Pence is the Cabinet member not being mercilessly trashed by the Lardass-in-Chief?
    Only overturning the Congress in 2018 is the First Step to legally save us from the probable fate of Trump becoming a nominee for a seat on the United States Supreme Court.

  16. Reverend,

    “How do we really push the reset: or is it too late and that is why the maniac is still there”

    It’s not too late. You create an ETHICAL FRONT as Hermann Rauschning advised the German people to do 80 years ago. It must be organized outside of partisan politics, which is all about winning, as I mentioned yesterday…..That’s our #1 goal at PEACEnet.

    “Similarly the fight against Judaism, while it is beyond question a central element not only in material consideration but in those of cultural policy, is part of the party doctrine; but, for all that, it is now an element in the revolutionary unsettling of the nation, a means of destruction of past categories of thinking and valuation, of the destroying the liberalist economic system based on private initiative and enterprise; it is also a sop to the destructive revolutionism of the masses, a first lesson of cynicism” p. 22

    “This irrational element in National Socialism is the actual source of its strength. It is the reliance on it that accounts for its “sleepwalker’s immunity” in face of one practical problem after another. It explains why it was possible for National Socialism to attain power without the slightest tangible ideas of what it was going to do. The movement was without even vague general ideas on the subject; all it had was boundless confidence: things would smooth themselves out one way or another. Give rein to the revolutionary impulse, and the problems would find their own solution. An open mind and no program at all—that is what enabled National Socialism to win through in its own way with its practical problems. Its strength lay in incessant activity and in embarking on anything so long as it kept things moving. [ sound familiar] Conversely, it abandoned anything that could hinder it, such as the Corporate State and the reform of the Reich. What it needed and intuitively took up were the opportunities of REVOLUTIONARY DISLOCATION.” pp. 22-23

    “….This much is certain, that the present course will end in Germany’s ruin. The only thing that is not certain is the actual road that will be pursued to ruin and the number of victims with which it will be strewn.” p. 291

    “But the conception of SOCIALISM seems also to have lost the significance which it had in the nineteenth century. At least in its doctrinaire form, a philosophy of history and a theory of society, it belongs to the past century. It has a future in spite of all counter-revolutionary and reactionary efforts; but only in so far as it is really a representative of the general interests of the whole nation and not merely the doctrine of a militant class. [maybe Todd should read this]” p. 117

    “The dictatorship will be overcome without a doctrine—not in the nihilist sense but the reverse, the readiness to accept and incorporate all that is CONSTRUCTIVE and CREATIVE. There is beginning to grow up what I might call the ETHICAL FRONDE. Against this fronde the totalitarian policy of National Socialism will come to grief. A state, a society, a nation, even the smallest community, has no lasting quality if it without an ethical basis. A totalitarian dictatorship of pure violence is possible on a basis of nihilism, but it destroys its own foundation in proportion as its principles become general among the masses….” pp. 117-18

    ~”The Revolution of Nihilism: Warning to the West” by Hermann Rauschning (Alliance Book Corporation, New York, 1939).

  17. What do you expect? They won. He will be confirmed, and one or more as well. What are you going to do about that?

  18. It’s funny, the rabid righters that I “debate” with online believe that they are resisting authoritarianism, which they define as what liberals are. They see themselves as Constitution loving freedom fighters.

    When I point out that freedom at all is freedom for all they get all authoritarian on me and tell me I am wrong and freedom includes them imposing on others their definitions of political and social terms.

    Obviously they have been expertly brainwashed a concept at a time by years of over serving themselves to entertainment media like Fox “News”.

    If the big picture was a conspiracy it would be a grand one but I don’t see that it is. It’s the confluence of many forces all individually motivated by make more money regardless of the impact on others. The fact that they happen to drag the country into authoritarian dysfunction is not the point, wealth redistribution is.

    Unfortunately a grand conspiracy would be easier to uncover and repel but a cultural shift motivated by taking who we are to extremes is a much softer target. You hit it here and it just morphs to there.

    Agent Orange is a social pathogenic contagion that needs to be contained first then eliminated.

    The containment part can be contributed to today and tomorrow and every day until Nov 6 when we will be successful or not. Then the real battle begins.

    Pushing off any decisions on SCOTUS until then is essential to the effort.

  19. The “unitary executive” in our Constitution was never meant to create an authoritarian office of the presidency. It was about vesting executive authority in one person so responsibility, accountability, and recourse (impeachment) were clear. Hamilton in Federalist paper No. 70 arguing against more than one person having executive power:

    “…the plurality of the Executive tends to deprive the people of the two greatest securities they can have for the faithful exercise of any delegated power, first, the restraints of public opinion, which lose their efficacy, as well on account of the division of the censure attendant on bad measures among a number, as on account of the uncertainty on whom it ought to fall; and, secondly, the opportunity of discovering with facility and clearness the misconduct of the persons they trust, in order either to their removal from office or to their actual punishment in cases which admit of it. “

  20. Louis XIV King of France is alleged to have said – I am the state.

    Back in the late 1960’s and 1970’s the idea of the Imperial Presidency gained traction, given actions by LBJ and Nixon.

    Per WIKI, The Imperial Presidency, by Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., is a book published in 1973. This book details the history of the Presidency of the United States from its conception by the Founding Fathers through the latter half of the 20th century. The author wrote the book out of two concerns: first, that the US Presidency was out of control and second, that the Presidency had exceeded its constitutional limits.

    Numerous Imperialist foreign military interventions were undertaken throughout the 20th and 21st centuries. The last declared war was WW 2, but we have had many defacto wars since then. The other piece is the under the radar interventions by the CIA. The Constitution was designed to prevent the President from assuming unilateral control of War Powers. Congress has abrogated this responsibility by granting nearly blank checks for a President to engage the military all over the globe.

    Agent Orange cannot distinguish between -I am the State- and the limitations on his powers. The police in the USA in some cases have difficulty separating, the erroneous position of -I am the Law- with I enforce the Law.

    The idea that any President is above the Law is wrong. The Declaration of Independence should be a guiding statement of the limitations on Executive Power.

  21. It’s good to read the resistance from readers against such tools of corporatism such as Kavanaugh.

    We have every right to be concerned and to be against such arbiters of destructive dogma. That means there is much compassion for the folks on the receiving end of such dogma from the readers as well. That’s very good. But,I can’t help and wonder why a venerated spokesman for the Democratic Party such as Joe Biden refused to show the same compassion for those on the receiving end of being in debt over student loans. Why did he ascribe to such corporate dogma? Plus,if we are concerned for those in debt of such loans,how come we are not as concerned for those in debt because of medical expenses? Why have we not come up with a genuine viable solution? Why must we be held hostage to insurance and pharmaceutical companies to satiate their desires to implement a real NHC program? Thailand has had national healthcare since 2002-03.Yet,the US can’t do it? America Is Great? BS!

  22. Todd S.: “As we all have learned, our society (capitalism) is all about who wins.”

    So true. Even “conversations” on this very blog are emblematic of the American-mantra “Win,Win,Win”.

    Political talk has really become a competition as opposed to a conversation. The best response is to simply go Socratic. As much as Americans fetishize individualism,we really are conformists.

  23. Old Governor Cuomo said it best about winning, to wit: “You gotta get a seat at the table.” He was and is right and the proof is right before our very eyes, as in > We don’t have a seat at the table today and look at where that puts us in re the appointment of Supreme Court justices, ruinous tax bills and threats of more, a reversal of Section 232 of a 1962 Cold War act that delegates the constitutional authority of Congress to the president to play tariff games upon a finding of national security involvement etc. etc. etc.

    There is room for Socratic and Aristotelian thinking in philosophy classrooms, but the reality in the gathering up and exercise of political power today is to get a seat at the table. I fear it is time to abandon Greek thought at least for the time being and adopt instead that of Machiavelli. Life is real and life is earnest – and so are political campaigns – so yes, winning is important, very important, since our democratic institutions and values are at stake November 6. Cuomo passed on the hemlock solution and went for a seat at the table. That is our task this fall, first and foremost, and we had better succeed lest, collectively, we ingest political hemlock.

  24. William interesting note on Joe Biden. Not sure yet if Biden will be the choice of “Centrist Democrats” read Establishment Corporate Democrats. We will know for sure once MSDNC begins inflating Biden’s Hot Air Balloon.

    On another note James Comey took to Twitter on Sunday, to warn us: Democrats, please, please don’t lose your minds and rush to the socialist left. This president and his Republican Party are counting on you to do exactly that. America’s great middle wants sensible, balanced, ethical leadership.

    HA, HA James Comey has tied himself up in so many tangled webs, but now he warns us.

    Just a few days ago Joe Lieberman crawled out from under a rock to warn us about Socialism.

    Among those dark threats from Socialism are: Health care for all, Free college for all, Good wages for all A livable planet for all, Justice for all, Getting big corporate, money out of politics, An America for all, not the few.

    If the Democrats hope to win they to stop nibbling at the Russia bait, Stormy Daniels bait, actually they not only nibbled on the bait they have swallowed it hook line sinker, instead of moving forward with a Progressive force of issues like:

    Health care for all, Free college for all, Good wages for all A livable planet for all, Justice for all, Getting big corporate, money out of politics, An America for all, not the few.

  25. After having Joe Lieberman cuckold the Democratic Party, why should anyone accept his advice? Why should anyone care what he has to say? Btw, Socialism is a dog-whistle for labor and universal healthcare.

  26. It wasn’t that long ago when Comey was considered persona non grata by Democrats…..Then, almost overnight he became a hero. Odd.

    Comey ranting about socialism is like a Republican on Social Security ranting against it as well. I bet Comey appreciates and enjoys his pension—Which was hard fought by ‘socialists” back in the day. Lieberman and Comey,what a pair of hypocrites and opportunists. Only the lazy and ignorant would consider such miscreants as good-men.

  27. Socialism is an economic system as is capitalism. Every country in the world today employs both. The economic philosophy movements of the last century have been experimented with and the conclusions are in. A mixed economy based on market by market realities has won. Markets which can be regulated to insure competition work best under private enterprise. Otherwise they need to be served by socialism.

    Both are necessary, neither is sufficient.

    We are all both socialists and capitalists.

  28. G Stinson,Yes life is real and earnest and always has been. Life isn’t a dress rehearsal and unfortunately the party of our choice acted as if it had been for 40 years by giving no real offense/defense against a Machiavellian organization such as the Republican Party and its donors.

    As you noted,political campaigns are real as well. If the election is so important,why wouldn’t a candidate visit important states? Why would a candidate become lazy and complacent and ignore such pertinent states? I can’t answer that. Nor can I answer why anyone would continue to use such lazy and clueless consultants after losing such an important election. Obviously the voters took the election much more seriously then the party and consultants. Plus,if hacking were an issue,why isn’t the party doing everything within its power to bring forth paper-balloting? I guess it’s just not important at the moment?

    Yes,we do need a seat at the table, we’re entitled to having one as we’ve had a seat and, for many years owned the table and the room itself. Something has happened. I guess the voters have become so stupid? I cannot understand why the change of heart? The Democrats have done so much for everyone over the past 20-30-40 years for the little people. They are the party of the people. Again,unfortunately,the Republicans seem to be very strong and the Democrats just can’t get a break. Having a blue wave—as we did in 08 will really change things. We need change–but I don’t know from what,considering the previous 8 years had been really good. Depending on who you are/were. Of course there is a much bigger fear and that fear is palpable, Theocracies are bad. We do not want Trump turning America into a Christian Nation State.

  29. The DNC is at a crossroads. Now they have been exposed to the incontestable evidence of the gullibility of the American electorate and the power of pure lies over them they have to decide once or for all between truth or consequences.

    What say ye?

    Truth or go for the win?

  30. Dumping on Comey is EXACTLY what the Republicans want us to do. Lieberman has no credibility with anyone. Here’s the nub of the entire situation; the next layer that Marv keeps telling us about:

    Health care for all, Free college for all, Good wages for all A livable planet for all, Justice for all, Getting big corporate, money out of politics, An America for all, not the few.

    This little passage is what Democrats should be campaigning on. But, no. The DCCC keeps sending out fliers and surveys (meaningless) attacking all things Trump. It’s an utter wasted effort. If that is Democratic centrism, it’s stupid. If the so-called radical left is espousing the kitchen-table issues, then they’re on the right track.

  31. Vernon,

    “Lieberman has no credibility with anyone. Here’s the nub of the entire situation; the next layer that Marv keeps telling us about.”

    Democrats like Lieberman are among the most culpable in preventing us from dealing with the NEXT LAYER of the ONION. When we finally line-up all the traitors, he needs, to be positioned on the front row, that’s for sure.

  32. It seems to me that human history is at a crossroads which will test our ability to profoundly change civilization. It’s not just America and America is not just Agent Orange. We have reached the end of the only rope we know. Either the changes or the consequences of not changing will be massive.

    It’s a profound question. Can we manage change at a rate that will avoid the consequences?

    Climate change has revealed our inability to fix big problems to avoid future consequences. That indicates we are not able to avoid consequences even though we see them coming. We want to wait for the pain to motivate action.

    Though I won’t be around to know the answer I’ve seen enough evidence to become pessimistic. I believe that we will wait until humanity and the rest of life and life’s only home are suffering greatly before the necessary systemic change is imposed on us by us.

    Not a good situation to create what we aren’t able to fix.

  33. Pete,
    RE: “We are all both socialists and capitalists.” And all countries are mixed economies.

    Since the basis of socialism vs. capitalism is ownership of the means of production i.e. workers vs. private, it seems to me you are casting a very wide net to bundle the two.

    But I am more interested, and I mean this politely and respectfully, what point were you trying to make? (Hope you are still reading comments)


  34. Vernon @ 1:50 pm, “Health care for all, Free college for all, Good wages for all A livable planet for all, Justice for all, Getting big corporate, money out of politics, An America for all, not the few.

    This little passage is what Democrats should be campaigning on. But, no. The DCCC keeps sending out fliers and surveys (meaningless) attacking all things Trump. It’s an utter wasted effort. If that is Democratic centrism, it’s stupid. If the so-called radical left is espousing the kitchen-table issues, then they’re on the right track.”

    I receive mailers and E-Mails at times from the DCCC and DNC. President Agent Orange is a huge Piñata and following the traditions the of Piñata the contestant is blindfolded and swings away. The DCCC and DNC are taking these mighty swings but hit only thin air, wasting energy.

    Bottom line the Democrats have to appeal to independent voters and give them a reason to vote for the kitchen – table issues as you put it. The Rabid Reactionary Republican Party has no answer, no program that can have Health care for all, Free college for all, Good wages for all A livable planet for all, Justice for all, Getting big corporate, money out of politics, An America for all, not the few. You could also add to this a strong, healthy financially solvent Social Security System.

    At least IMHO it is pointless to engage the hard core Trumpters. These hard core Trumpters are like evangelical fanatics in their belief in Agent Orange.

  35. John,

    Pete is an expert in WIDE NET CASTING. His specialty involves world-wide environmental problems such as pollution. Naturally, his attempts at CASTING in the political arena are not as accurate as the former. The quality of his input is not the same. Nevertheless, there is still much to gain from observing his process. No doubt, he has outstanding vision.

  36. ML,

    Good comments at 2:57. Yes, as with most cults, the true believers are kind of like “Tommy”: Deaf, dumb and blind. Worse, they don’t WANT to learn the truth or even listen to alternate explanations.

    Probably the saddest group in the lot are those who started out being Trump acolytes, now realize that they voted for a monster and are stuck with not knowing what to do, or which candidates to vote for next. This presents such a GOLDEN opportunity for Democrats that I can’t believe there is even a question about what the strategy should be. These folks already realize their mistakes, and now must be presented with what they thought they were getting for their families, but didn’t.

    The DNC’s Tom Perez is so far out of touch with this idea as to be non-existent. They need a real leader with a real purpose who promotes real candidates. Otherwise….

  37. Vernon; who is Tom Perez? Oh, I remember now; he was “elected” chairman of DNC. Has anyone filed a missing persons report on him with authorities yet?

  38. Vernon and JoAnn,

    Thought I was the only person disenchanted with Tom Perez. He is all things to all people, and thus is nothing.


  39. Vernon,

    “This presents such a GOLDEN opportunity for Democrats that I can’t believe there is even a question about what the strategy should be. These folks already realize their mistakes, and now must be presented with what they thought they were getting for their families, but didn’t.”

    That’s the challenge: Presenting the TRUTH in an ACCEPTABLE WAY. The underlying answers are in the NEXT LAYER OF THE ONION. Those folks have been MISLEAD. Their future is in JEOPARDY, just like ours.

  40. John, that’s my reaction when people associate liberals and Democrats with socialism, an economic system practiced by every country in the world today. Government shouldn’t be define by a market by market choice between a few of us or all of us owning the means of production. It is to me an antiquated term from the previous century when there was lots of economic philosophizing and experimentation going on that has since resolved into everyone with a mixed economy that employs both systems in the markets that they work best in.

    To me calling liberals and Democrats socialist merely obscures the real values that we stand for and those are defined as liberal democracy, not by economic systems.

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