Superhero Wednesday: “Can’t we all just get along?”

Yes, Rodney. In America, ‘yes we can’… if we try.

-kia

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65 thoughts on “Superhero Wednesday: “Can’t we all just get along?”

  1. You confuse getting along with giving in. Some things are worth standing firm on, like liberal democratic values rather than rolling over and playing dead to suit the ego of someone like a Donald Trump who, with a stroke of a pen, relegated environmental oversight to the delete file and began substituting ‘alternative facts’ as the guide forward. Sorry, KIA, but going along with this travesty in the name of getting along looks exactly like appeasement and capitulation to me. And some of us know the plot line to this historical story all too well to go quiet into this good night.

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      • You address government gag orders, funding freezes, data deletions, operation suspensions with this, that those who complain are whining?

        Really, Ron? You think this is business as usual? Well, maybe in Putin’s Russia…

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        • President Trump’s openly communicated his intentions for the first 100 days on his website and throughout his campaign; so it’s disingenuous to feign surprise that he’s now following through on his promises after the election. Nor is there anything sinister about implementing a temporarily freeze on new grants, contracts and hiring decisions during the transition period, or restricting employees from engaging in unauthorized communications with outsiders.

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          • Nothing sinister? What big rose coloured glasses you wear, Grandma!

            The EPA orders are not temporary but calculated to kill regulation of updated air pollution rulings for several states, renewable fuel standards and limits on the amount of formaldehyde that can leach from wood products, and other regulations passed in the last six months under Obama’s presidency.. The orders do not just freeze but cancel all new business activities at the department, including issuing task orders or work assignments to EPA contractors. This has the effect of neutering the Agency from carrying out is legal mandate… until such a time as Trump handles decide on your behalf what environmental oversight will be permitted to suit his personal opinions of its proper role and gags all EPA agents from informing the public of what’s going on in this publicly funded agency. That’s not business as usual nor is it typical in changes of Administrations. It is to suit business that abuses the environment to make a profit. It is deeply serious, deeply sinister.

            As is the stop orders from funding NGOs who make abortion services available to at risk women globally, a halt in funding that is estimated to result in the unnecessary death of over 20,000 women. I’d call that kind of executive decision without ANY public consultation, any medical consultation, any health related consultation sinister not because of anything to do with Hillary but because it demonstrates by action the sinister and deeply held loathing of liberal values currently exercising political power that occupies the entire executive branch. Only one segment of the population is served by such an order and it is the wingnuttery of the right to life religious fanatics and others who think their beliefs define reality, others who really who don’t mind killing real women in real life in the name but not the actuality of saving babies. Pious beliefs Trump medicine, so to speak, because what The Donald’s belief in his alternate facts matters more for people like you than the factual harm caused to real people in real life.

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              • Sorry Ron but tildeb didn’t say anything about Trump’s actions being unconstitutional. He disagreed with what you said about them not being sinister. I have no choice but to agree with him. Yes he was democratically elected and he is the president and as such has the authority to be doing what he’s doing. There’s no arguing that point. The point of contention is however, the very real harm that he’s doing with his policies. Revoking funding for non government organizations that provide abortion and abortion counseling is going to have some very negative effects. A LOT of people (mostly women) are going to suffer as a result of this decision. And for what? So he can build a wall between Mexico and the US? More or less dismantling the EPA because you believe that Global Climate Change is a Chinese hoax? The effect of that might not be felt right away, but it’s a decision that could have dire and possibly fatal consequences for future generations.
                I am sooooooo glad I don’t live in the US. That man is going to set progress back at least a generation if not more.

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              • The president’s sole obligation is to uphold the Constitution of the United States. To wit:

                “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

                Until he violates that oath, there’s no basis for demanding his removal from office.

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              • The point of my comment is addressing the absurd notion that pulling together at this time is patriotic. It’s not. It’s collusion as the Donald sets about dismantling trust in public institutions in order to undermine the functioning of a western liberal democratic country. This is how Strongmen are created: to fill in for the rising tide of social dysfunction and power inequity by setting out to make public institutions as agencies to regulate excesses of political power distrusted and viewed with suspicion. Your gullibility in this matter is jaw-dropping when you equate this appeasement, this active support of a dangerous narcissistic demagogue like Trump with patriotism. You’re being patriotic to the man and not to the welfare of the nation to which he has won elected office to serve and protect. What you’re seeing unfold is the opposite of this oath and your too conditioned with partisanship blinkers to see it happening before your very eyes.

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              • I’m not sure which is more disconcerting: the fact that so many are unfamiliar with what it says, or the fact that so many are willing to set it aside whenever it suits their political desires.

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              • Ron, they don’t care what the Constitution says unless they can use it to further their ends. Usually, they ignore it because it directly blocks their plans

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              • The issue of the Constitution raised by Ron has nothing to do with criticizing this Administration’s reprehensible actions. And it’s hardly remarkable that you go along with this diversion and I’m actually quite disappointed that you also go along with the presumption of ignorance by those of us who have tried to ignore this diversion. The issue I’m criticizing is sweeping very legitimate, very important criticism under the rug and calling the clean up job ‘patriotism’. It’s not. It’s Chamberlain-esque appeasement in the face of tyranny..

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              • Why do you presume critics of this Administration here on this site don’t know much about the Constitution? Presume much, or simply assume that what you wish to believe is in fact true?

                Ron, you’re a piece of work.

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              • tildeb,

                Where did I state the critics of this Administration commenting on this site don’t know much about the Constitution?

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              • You wrote, “I’m not sure which is more disconcerting: the fact that so many are unfamiliar with what it says, or the fact that so many are willing to set it aside whenever it suits their political desires.

                This is in reference to the Constitution. You think Ashley has no basis for his criticism because he can’t show where Trump has violated the Constitution (that’s not what Ashley was saying but an introduction by you of diversion from that criticism).

                Who are the ‘so many’? You are responding to KIA, who asks, “Asking a progressive to quote the constitution? Amazing. Lol”

                So yes, Ron, this yet yet another example of you trying to divert attention away from criticizing the gong show that is the Trump Administration by suggesting only if an action is contrary to the letter of the Constitution is any criticism legitimate. I notice with some irony how you never raised this supposedly essential point criticizing Obama. Funny, that ongoing hypocrisy.

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              • My comment was delivered as a general observation concerning the American electorate. If you read it as anything more than that you’re projecting your own thoughts into the mix.

                As to diversions, any criticism that cannot demonstrate the Trump administration has violated the U.S. Constitution is misdirected.

                Liked by 1 person

              • Then you should have said so and corrected KIA’s assertion that it referred only to ‘progressives’. You didn’t, so I think you’re being disingenuous, Ron.

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              • Think what thou wilt. Having made the clarification I see little purpose in belaboring the point. However, your lack of charity is duly noted.

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          • I said it is harmful to do what this administration is trying to do, namely, impose beliefs on reality and then try to remake reality. Ron told me I was whining. Yet here we have compelling evidence that this is EXACTLY what we see happening:

            “The communications director for President Donald Trump’s transition team at EPA, Doug Ericksen, said Wednesday the review extends to all existing content on the federal agency’s website, including details of scientific evidence showing that the Earth’s climate is warming and man-made carbon emissions are to blame.

            Ericksen clarified his earlier statements he made to The Associated Press, which reported that the Trump administration was mandating that any studies or data from EPA scientists undergo review by political appointees before they can be released to the public. He said he was speaking about existing scientific information on the EPA website that is under review by members of the Trump administration’s transition team.”

            Oh yes, that clarifies things tremendously. No substituting alternate facts here; we’ll just delete whatever scientific data doesn’t comport to Trump’s beliefs Easy peasy.

            The Trump team will tell you what is scientific and what isn’t. That’s right out of 1984 by Orwell: the very mandate of the Ministry of Truth. If this real life example from this Administration doesn’t start the alarm bells ringing in the ears of honest patriots who respect what’s actually true then I don’t know what would.

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            • Unfortunately (for you), this conversation can’t proceed until you point out which clause of the Constitution he’s violated; because that is the only guideline that matters.

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              • So Ron it doesn’t matter to you if anything he does is against all common sense? That what they plan on doing is more or less the exact opposite of what evidence indicates they should do?
                Never ever question or criticize the presidents policies? Is that what you’re saying?

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              • I’m saying the United States Constitution is the blueprint that informs all decisions pertaining to governance within the U.S.

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              • Mike, hopefully this won’t AGAIN end up in spam because here’s a potential solution. I looked online and this is what I found in a forum where others were experiencing the same problem:

                Should your comments start getting spammed again, it is most likely a problem with Akismet. To get that fixed your best option is to contact Akismet support directly at this link: https://akismet.com/contact/

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              • Turnover in some key areas of management is to be expected; wholesale amputation of all senior management in a knowledge-dependent area of expertise is not. It cannot help but harm – deeply damage – the State Department as a functioning bureaucracy. Again, this public institution has been attacked and we get to suffer the consequences for decades to come.

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              • Can you point me to the part of the constitution that says that Global Climate Change is a Chinese Hoax and that you shouldn’t listen to the nations and the worlds top scientists that are telling everyone they can that we need to do something about it before it’s too late? To hell with the EPA!!! Let’s start up more Coal fired power plants!!!!! Let industry pollute until their heart is content. There’s profit to be made!
                Who’s to say what is common sense? How about people who study the problem? Shouldn’t you listen to them? Perhaps consider what they have to say?
                Who can’t tell when they listen to Donald Trump talk that he’s an uninformed ignoramus with the lexicon of a 12 year old? That he’s a incredibly thin skinned, total narcissist, obsessed with his own image? Look at the idiots he’s surrounded himself with in his cabinet. A who’s who of ignorant morons, extreme religious nut bags and downright crackpots. Yes, he was elected and yes he’s the president. So do you just sit idly by and say “Oh well, he’s the President and he can do what he wants”. This man and his band of clowns have the power to ruin your country and potentially worse. What happens when leading economists start telling him that his policies might have a severely negative impact on the American and world economy? All signs indicate that he’s just ignore them and do whatever the hell he wants.
                One thing I can say for sure. Lots of people wanted change. Well, they are sure as hell gonna get it. I think that virtually all Americans, except for the very elite wealthy and rich, are going to be much worse off 4 years from now than they are today.

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              • Ashley,

                The constitution prescribes exactly how the government is supposed to function and the scope of its authority. That which isn’t expressly permitted is forbidden—i.e. the federal government can legitimately do only that which the Constitution specifically states it is permitted to do and no more. And the founders were very extremely adamant about that last point.

                So to answer your question: the federal government does not have the constitutional authority to administer or fund any of the three- and four-letter agencies currently in existence. If the founders came back from the grave they would close them down in the blink of an eye.

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              • Close them down? That’s just bullshit.The Constitution is simply the basis and not the entire structure for liberal democracy. But look how conveniently you forget other sentiments from that time when applied to today: for example a very small military. And you completely ignore Jefferson;s sentiment, that “god forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a rebellion . . . the tree of Liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. it is it’s natural manure.”

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              • Ever heard of the Amendments? Now think, Ron… how could this document be amended if it already laid out all the allowable expressions of that power?*

                *Hint: “…in order to form a more perfect union…” Doesn’t mean Jefferson didn’t understand the notion of redundancy in basic grammar, but it does indicate something ‘more’ than what you seem to think constitutes the presidency of that union.

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              • LOL

                I would advise searching out a better analogy. Citing an uprising against a Republican president that ended in failure indicates you’re the one who should take heed of the results. 🙂

                And pointing out that southern states were willing to cede from the union in protest of what they considered to be an unconstitutional encroachment of federal powers kind of strengthens my point—don’t you think?

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              • You think 650,000 dead to assert federal dominance over state rights is worth a LOL chuckle? You have a bizarre sense of humour. I was citing the war not as a failed rebellion by a ‘republican’ President as Ron is now painting it to be (as if I’m so ignorant as to think the ‘republican’ moniker means the same thing today when it does not – almost the opposite, actually) but as the final arbiter of Ron’s insipid Constitutional point about end-of-story legality from ONLY the original Articles as he interprets them to be. It’s an argument that has already been long settled and at much cost and he is unequivocally wrong.

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              • The argument was settled. Permanently. That’s why the powers exercised today are is for a country radically different than the one formed in 1776. Change is inevitable and we face issues today – especially the need for regulation and funding – about which the founding fathers had no clue. That’s why the Union is constantly evolving as a political unit and pedantic references using the Constitution as if only that mattered simply waves away this historical change. Your diversion to defend the Trump Administration from legitimate criticism is not just unrealistic but entirely hypocritical when used by people only for partisan reasons as you are doing here. What Trump is doing may be legal in a Constitutional sense but so was Hitler’s rise to power. That doesn’t make support for such dangerous and shortsighted policy enactments patriotic as you imply.

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              • Settled by whom? The Federalist Papers, which address the purpose and meaning of practically every clause within the Constitution, do no support your assessment about what was and wasn’t intended by the founders.

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    • What a great start to the second week in office: the president signed an executive action on Saturday that adds White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon to the National Security Council (NSC) and removes the director of national intelligence and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

      So, take a listen to Bannon in this clip. He’s a madman. And now he has access to the nuclear codes while, at the same time, no longer has to defend his batshit crazy views on the council from someone who actually knows about the state of the world. Scared yet? Ready to actually do something to try to stop this insanity rather than mouth platitudes about going along in the name of patriotism?

      This order is concrete evidence about Trump’s inability to separate fact from alternative facts and then choosing only the ones he likes best. That’s Bannon’s role, empowering fiction. This is a rabbit hole And Trump is taking the rest of the world down into it.

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  2. Let’s revisit George Orwell’s pertinent words here:

    “There is no use in multiplying examples. The point is that we are all capable of believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, when we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as to show that we were right. Intellectually, it is possible to carry on this process for an indefinite time: the only check on it is that sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield.”

    That’s where we’re headed when an Administration tries to shape reality to fit their beliefs no matter what the cost may be to real people in real life. It is not helpful to wrap this march towards inevitable conflict with reality in a flag of patriotism. Such a call, in fact, is harmful.

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  3. Oh look: the entire senior management for the State Department just resigned. This Administration doesn’t need a transition team, Trump – who has zero foreign policy experience – needs a transplant team. But it’s only the State Department. It’s not the US has any dealings with foreign governments.

    Good grief.

    Who knew there were no ‘patriots’ in every senior management position at the State department? Oh wait… maybe they all were. Real patriots, I mean, and not just Trump patriots.

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        • Hold overs? Good grief but you don;t know the first thing about transitions in the public sector if you believe that. These are the people with international experience at all levels of foreign policy and who know all the movers and shakers in every country. get rid of them, you’re starting blind, deaf, and dumb.

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          • The real problem is that a lot of people have prejudged everything trump will do and every staff pick he makes as either inferior to Obama’s or just inferior just because they can’t stand trump. Not an honest way of thinking or dealing with reality.
            People and situations are rarely just black and white, red or blue. And you can’t prejudge the future picks of someone who hasn’t picked them yet.
            You would probably have been outraged if Obama were dealt with this way, and so would I have been. The hate and vitriol trump has been receiving since the election is more irrational and emotional than honest and open minded. Hillary said that we owe him the chance to lead… let’s see what he does… past just the first week into his term.

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          • I’m not arguing that it’s not his choice. I am arguing that he’s an incompetent idiot who will appoint other equally (if not more) incompetent idiots to run the state department. You said “good riddance” to the existing state department who resigned en-masse yesterday. Sounds like you’re the one making he comparison are you not? Am I mistaken in that you are glad that they are gone and that Trump is going to appoint a better, or at least different, set of representatives? That’s what it comes across sounding like to me. Please correct me if I am wrong.

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            • The Obama administration is gone, Brother. Yes they made some pretty big screw ups. I don’t know anymore than you do if trumps choice will be ‘better’ or worse. Didn’t say anything of the kind in my comment. They will be his choices. I think you are already prejudiced against anything he does or anyone he picks. Not an honest and open way of thinking. Just my opinion. Again, Hillary and Obama both encouraged people to give him the chance to lead. Not Carte Blanc, but certainly more that a mindset that already prejudges anything he does.

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              • Very well, as they say, your opinion is your own. I would just think that by listening to the 2 men talk that it would be instantly recognizable that Obama is much more capable of making rational decisions based on evidence and reasoning and that Trump is nothing more than a bullshit artist and a con man concerned only with his own ego.
                I mean, I’ve seen his cabinet picks
                – Scott Pruitt, climate change denier in charge of the EPA
                – Rick Perry, candidate for biggest moron on the planet, in charge of the Dept of Energy
                – Ben Carson, young earth creationist and uber religious nutjob, Sec of Housing and Development
                – Steve Bannon, CEO of extreme right wing “news” Breitbart as Chief Strategist to the President
                – Mike Pence, extreme religious, anti-LGBT, Anti-choice (abortion), creationist wingnut as Vice President
                and so on and so forth

                You don’t think that gives me reason to prejudge his future decisions? You think idiots like this are capable of making sound decisions based on evidence and reason? The whole lot of them are practically insane!

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              • … and people on the right were saying the same things about Obama’s picks. We gave him a chance. In my opinion, Obama made some pretty big blunders and screw ups, but not all of his decisions or the decisions of his cabinet were screw ups or as horrible as the rhetoric was at the time. People are rarely just one thing. As Obama and Hillary said, we owe trump the chance to lead just as we gave Obama the chance to succeed. To prejudge everything about Trump as horrible, insane, and destructive is just as bigoted and irrational as the loonies who prejudged obama

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              • As far as I am aware, and you can certainly correct me if I am wrong, Obama didn’t have anyone that even enters the same sphere of crazy as Mike Pence, Rick Perry or Ben Carson in his cabinet or in his periphery. Not even close. People on the right might have been saying so, but alas, that does not make it true. They might have had many faults, but at least they were grounded in reality which is based on facts and reason, not conspiracy theory, pseudo science and religious nutbaggery, which seems to be overwhelmingly prevalent in this new government. There’s no possible way you can deny that.

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              • Again. It’s not a comparison game. Obama is not president and Trump doesn’t have to pick in accordance with Obama’s liking or even yours or mine. Give him more than one week on the job. Obama and Hillary said to give him a chance

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              • It’s not a prejudice brought to the table, KIA, by those out to complain about everything related to Trump as you seem to imagine: rather, it’s a legitimate and rational response to actions already undertaken. For example, advance teams for the Trump administration instigated a placard waving demonstration – by working scientists, no less… almost unheard of. Are these people doing this because of an imported prejudice?

                No.

                They are responding to political intervention in their work.

                Think about that. Like, seriously… actually think about that and try to figure out if it’s worth criticizing.

                That’s why the American Geophyiscal Union representing a broad spectrum of various science organizations sent a letter to the Department of Agriculture, Department of Energy, Department of the Interior, Department of State, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration,the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Park Service, and the National Science Foundation where ongoing political interference by the Trump Administration had already been reported. The letter expressed ‘concern’ about violations of scientific integrity by representative of the Trump Administration and interference with public access to and communication of scientific information.

                This is very serious shit worthy not of hand waving about coming together and supporting Trump under the ludicrous banner of patriotism but public outrage. The letter explained why such interference – actions ongoing by the Trump teams under the direction and ordered by the White House through these appointed heads of these public institutions – undermined scientific integrity and hindered transparency… both absolutely critical to “advancing national security, a strong economy, public health, and food security.”

                That such a letter was needed and the explanation required as to why ongoing Trump-ordered political and partisan interference was a Bad Idea demonstrates the spineless Junior High quality of leadership being installed. These actions by such juvenile idiots so stupid that they think this is a Good Idea deserve widespread condemnation and criticism by real patriots of the country, and not the mewling patriotic platitudes and Clinton bashing and name-calling by those who wish to pretend this kind of shit isn’t going on and isn’t a result of orders by an incompetent despotic wannabe President. The man is a danger to all of us and needs to be condemned when he does such stupid, counterproductive, and deeply anti-American things to our – not Trump’s – public institutions.

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              • You keep coming back to this thing about “liking”, when I have made reference several times to their abilities to use reason and evidence to inform their decision making. All evidence indicates that many people in Trump’s cabinet are completely incapable of doing so. They are wholly incapable of distinguishing fantasy (what they believe and want to be true) from reality (what actually is true).
                Climate change is real. It’s happening and we’re the cause of it and if we don’t so something about it right away, we’re going to be in big trouble going forward.
                Bearing that in mind, I will just ask you a straight up question then. Scott Pruitt, anti science, climate change denier, in charge of the very organization (The EPA) that is meant to protect the environment by curtailing or controlling practices that will worsen the effects of climate change. Good idea or bad idea? Does this come as a surprise to you that he was appointed to that post given that the President himself is a global climate change denying conspiracy theorist? How capable is Scott (and Donald for that matter) of solving or controlling a problem that he won’t acknowledge even exists, despite the mountain of evidence that it does? Do you think this bodes well for the future?
                My answer is no. I think it’s going to be a complete and total disaster.

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