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Impeach Trump NOW

We’re at the 56 day mark for President Trump’s first term in office. We all knew this wasn’t going to be a traditional presidency and from watching Trump during the campaign I knew he’d make a disastrous president but never in my wildest nightmares did I expect it to be this bad this soon. The incompetence, the secrecy, the mismanagement, the infighting, the irreverent disrespect of norms and tradition, the lack of leadership, the paranoia, the toxic relationship with the press, the nepotism, the staff’s lack of government experience, constant scandal after scandal, and worst of all the avalanche of lies from Trump and his administration that bombards us daily.

Never in our nations history have we had a president who lies so easily and then forces his staff to deal with the aftermath and clean up the mess he made. We’ve seen this play out over and over again with each new lie he tells. This damage control process has become very familiar to us:

When Trump sent that absurd untrue tweet 2 weeks ago accusing President Obama of committing a felony (wire tapping Trump Tower), and insulting President Obama by calling him “a sick guy” that should have been enough to get republicans to start questioning the President’s ability to serve his full term as President. How can they say their party believes in integrity, honesty, and leadership and still support Trump? If those values meant anything to them they would call a meeting with the democrats and hammer out a plan to remove this corrosive cancer who’s a bigger threat to our democracy than terrorism. Each day Trump is allowed to stay in office, he makes us weaker as a country.

We’re only 56 days in and Trump had to fire his National Security Adviser for lieing about his contact with Russian officials during the presidential campaign. His attorney General committed perjury during his Senate confirmation hearing and had to recuse himself from the investigation into the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with Russian officials who hacked the DNC to help Trump win. Trump’s first military mission was a failure that led to the deaths of a US service member and an American little girl. When interviewed about the disastrous mission Trump didn’t take any responsibility at all as commander in chief. Instead he blamed his generals. His executive order that issued a travel ban targeting Muslim majority countries got smacked down by 3 different courts. He lied about winning the popular vote. Has his family sit in on meetings and takes a vacation to Palm Beach every weekend to play golf, which costs US taxpayers $3.5 million for each trip. And his healthcare bill will fail in the Senate.No to trump

I just don’t see how we can live with a president who lies compulsively, who’s under investigation for collusion with a foreign government, and thinks he can take every weekend off. He spends more time speaking at campaign style rallies, flying back and forth between DC and his properties and playing golf than he does in the white house workingfor the American people.

HEY PAUL RYAN AND MITCH MCCONNELL, please put what’s best for our country before your loyalty to your political party and tell Trump to resign or get impeached. We can’t have this kind of cahos and incompetence bringing us down for the next 4 years. The way things have been going is absolutely unsustainable.

20 Donald Trump Lies

Family Guy as Donald Trump

2016 republican nominee for President of the United States Donald Trump has a long disturbing history of lying about almost everything. Even trivial stuff that can easily be disproven. For example, Trump said he met Russian president Vladimir Putin when they both did a 60 minutes interview. Every journalist knew this was a lie as soon as he said it but he couldn’t help himself. Lying seems to be the only way he knows how to operate. This blog post would be way too long if I tried to list all of his questionable statements, so here are 20 Donald Trump lies that I find the most interesting.

1. The Mexican government is selecting criminals and rapists and sending them to sneak into the United States.

2. Undocumented Mexican immigrants commit more crime than native born United State citizens.

3. President Barack Obama is not a Untied States citizen and the birth certificate he produced was fake.

4. Trump said he hired a team of investigators and sent them to Hawaii where President Obama was born to obtain evidence that supported Trump’s unfounded theory that the President was not born in the United States.

5. Trump said his investigators found some unbelievable evidence that disputed the legitimacy of President Obama’s citizenship. Trump said he would release the information but 7 years have passed since those birther accusations, and in all that time he has made no effort to share the so-called “findings” with the public.

6. Trump claimed that President Obama never attended Harvard. Trump said he got the information from his investigators and they told him that no one remembered President Obama ever being on campus.20 Donald Trump lies

7. During the 2012 Presidential election Trump claimed that President Obama spent $4 million dollars to hide his school transcripts and conceal his passport information.

8. Trump claimed that the current unemployment rate is at least 42% and could be as high as 50%. The correct unemployment rate is 4.9% (5/2016). HUGE difference.

9. Trump said President Obama is accepting 200,000 Syrian refugees into the United States. The accurate number is 10,000.

10. Trump says he never supported the invasion of Iraq and warned people against it from the very start. In a taped interview in 2002 Trump seemed to support the invasion and said nothing against it in any interview until 2005.

11. Trump says he watched thousands of Muslim’s in New Jersey celebrate on television after the 9/11 terrorist attack.

12. Trump said the wives of the 9/11 terrorists knew what their husbands were planning and left the United States a few days before the attack. According to the 9/11 Commission report only 1 of the terrorists were married and none of them shared any plans with family members and none of their family in the United States left before the attack.

13.
Trump said he predicted that Osama bin Laden was going to attack the World Trade Center 2 years before it happened. There is zero evidence that this prediction took place.

20 Donald Trump Lies14. Trump says he’s a self made man who built a very successful company from nothing. This is untrue. His father was very wealthy and owned a lot of property in New York. When Trump wanted to strike out on his own, his father gave him $1 million dollars to start his company.

15. Trump claims he made $213 million for his NBC reality tv show “The Apprentice”. NBC said he was paid only $2 million for the series.

16. Trump claimed that the Russian president Vladmir Putin called him a genius in an interview. This is false. Putin called Donald “colorful”, not a genius.

17. Trump claimed to have met Russian president Vladmir Putin and got along well with him when they both did interviews on “60 Minutes” on the same night. This is false because Putin did his interview via satellite from Russia and has never even been in the same room with Trump.

18. Trump claimed that Ted Cruz’s father was somehow involved with the assassination of President Kennedy.

19. Trump continually claims that he is beating rival Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in every poll. This is false as of 5/13/16. There’s not even 1 national poll that shows he is leading Hillary.

20. Trump says President Obama will go down as the worst president in history because America has been in decline since Obama was elected in 2008.

 

Here’s the indisputable truth of President Obama’s term in office so far

This is what a successful presidency looks like. Donald Trump would destroy all the progress President Obama made because Trump is incapable of thinking about anyone but himself. How can republican voters put their faith into someone who lies as much as Donald Trump does? By no means is President Obama a perfect president but he sure isn’t “ruining America” (as Trump suggested). President Obama has been a public servant for the past 20 years with his integrity, beliefs and self-respect intact. Trump never had any of those qualities and it’s scary how close he is to the most powerful job on earth where every decision he makes can effect all of humanity. I’m pleading with republicans in hopes of getting them to see this man for what he really is. An insecure overcompensating egomaniac who looks you in the eye and lies, while flirting with elements of totalitarianism in every interview and rally speech he gives. After 4 years of Trump as president every single supporter he has right now will long for the good old days when that black family lived in the White House.

Conspiracy Nuts Common

Conspiracy Nuts Common

I received one the dumbest comments left on my blog, which I will not post because I have a strict policy about hate-speech. But there was one part of the comment I will address because it’s something I’ve heard over and over again. Below is a small excerpt of the comment I’m talking about:

“Your lawless president hates America and you’re too dumb to see it.”
– Anonymous Moron

The elegance of the commenters ignorance is astounding but I’ll attempt to respond anyway. It’s one thing to disagree with the policies set by the president or to criticize his effectiveness as a leader. That kind of critique is totally valid and understandable because opinions are very subjective. Especially when you have two sides with very different views about what needs to be done to make our country a more perfect union. I get that, but what I don’t get is the way a lot of conservatives frame their disagreements with the president. Most of the time they are incredibly condescending calling into question the president’s understanding or intelligence, or their attacks become very conspiratorial (like the one above). It’s the crazy insane conspiracies that bother me the most. This gentleman is suggesting that the president is purposely on a mission to destroy the country because the president secretly hates America. This kind of thinking has become very common among conservatives. For example, the fake Benghazi scandal (created by Fox News). Conservatives actually believe that President Obama ordered our military not to rescue the Americans in our consulate when they were under attack. Never mind this has been debunked by all 8 investigations into Benghazi and by every official account given after the attack. How can seemingly intelligent individuals believe that Barack Obama became president to destroy America and watch Americans die as a part of some nefarious plan? They weren’t saying he just dropped the ball due to incompetence, they were saying he made a conscience decision to let the American Ambassador and his staff die. A significant portion of American conservatives believes this wholeheartedly. It’s very important to understand the distinction here because it can explain why republicans refuse to compromise or work with the president on anything. A definite “no”, merits be damned has been the raison d’être of the republican party for the past 6 years. So Before we complain about the partisanship of Washington politics, I think we have to examine the flaws within our own views and throw away the divisive insulting conspiracies. I believe anyone who makes it to the white house has already proven their commitment to the country. That position isn’t easy to come by, and it’s even harder to win two terms (especially for our first black president). So their patriotism and love for their country as president should not be a part of any serious discussion. If you do not respect the man, at least have some respect the office he holds.

United States of Secrets

Secret courts, sealed indictments, private rulings, redacted records, no oversight. I know it sounds like I’m describing a country in the middle east, but sadly I’m not. I’m talking about the land of the free and the home of the brave… good old USA. How did our beloved country come to spy on millions of it’s own citizens? PBS’s Frontline gives us the inside story of our government’s massive and controversial secret surveillance program and the lengths they went to try to keep it hidden from the public. This 2 part story is very compelling and should be viewed by ALL Americans because we can’t let politicians and billionaire insiders decide what our rights are, who they apply to, and when it’s ok to violate them. That is not the same America who’s constitution and bill of rights are envied and admired the world over. My eyes were opened after watching this so I feel it’s my duty as an American to shine a light on it for those who aren’t aware of this issue and for those who aren’t sure what the facts are because most media outlets are doing such a crappy job covering it.

 

 

Amazing reporting by Frontline and PBS. Whenever someone in congress gets up to make a speech about cutting PBS’s budget or completely doing away with PBS altogether, we should send them a copy of this program. The New York Times holding back that story when they had a chance to lift the veil on major ongoing crimes committed by President Bush and his administration. That decision represents the failure of corporate media. How many other stories have major news entities held back over the years? Snowden was right to choose Greenwald (even though I disagree with some of Greenwald’s methods). Who knows what would have happened if he would have chosen Fox or NBC or The Wall Street Journal.

I voted for President Obama in 2008 and 2012. I think he’s done a good job as president overall but his promises of transparency, his decision to continue the illegal NSA surveillance, lack of oversight on the US drone program, and his administration’s treatment of whistleblowers are areas that I feel very troubled by. It’s extremely disappointing to say the least. If republicans would go after him for those things, I really couldn’t blame them. Those are very legitimate areas to criticize… but for some reason they go after him for fake scandals like Benghazi, and the IRS, and Fast and Furious. How about 40 more votes for the repeal of Obamacare, or one more investigation on Benghazi after 7 have already been done, or let’s call Lois Learner to appear before Issa’s committee to invoke the 5th again just in time to make the 6:00 news. All of that seems much more important than this little NSA illegally tapping American phone calls and monitoring our email and web traffic. Maybe they live in glass houses when it comes to allowing the NSA to run these types of programs. Who the heck knows why politicians do what they do?

Republicans chasing phony scandals and the president not following through on his campaign promise of transparency injects mistrust and breeds even more cynicism when it comes to our expectations of what politicians can get done. We as citizens can break that cycle if we stop treating political parties like sports teams to root for rain or shine. Politicians know this and that’s how they get away with making horrible decisions and it’s how congress gets away with 6 years of complete inaction. If I’m a republican who supports sensible gun control and I see the president giving some push-back on republicans who are against gun control, I feel like I need to defend and root for my home team even though I agree with the president. So all of a sudden I’m no longer for sensible gun control. I’ve seen democrats do the exact same thing. To make our government work for us and not against us, we need to stop treating politics like a sport. It’s the only way we can start holding our elected officials accountable again. Let the tv pundits and political analyst do the home team rooting shtick. Someone has to be the adult and change our “them vs us” mentality. Now I’ll step down from my soapbox. If you know people who need to see this news report please pass along this blog address.  All of us at Socially Urban would greatly appreciate your help in reaching those who are thought to be unreachable.

United States of Secrets the official FRONTLINE PBS site to watch the report. If the youtube videos above aren’t working use this link to watch the program..

 



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Tea Party Mandela Rip No Surprise

Former House Majority Leader Newt Gingrich posted a heartfelt tribute to Nelson Mandela the day his death was announced.  Newt called Mandela “one of the greatest leaders of our time” and acknowledged Mandela’s legacy as a cultural icon who fought to free his people from racial oppression.  Unlike a lot of other republicans who had nice things to say about the man, Newt had a history of anti Apartheid votes to back it up.  When Ronald Reagan tried to veto sanctions passed by congress against the oppressive regime, Newt voted to block President Reagan’s veto.  Not an easy decision for a republican to block a veto from a republican president.  I have my issues with Newt and he’s said and done some pretty awful things throughout his political career, but on the issue of Apartheid Newt was pretty courageous (probably the last time I’ll ever use courageous and Newt in the same sentence).  So after newt posts his short and kind tribute on his facebook page, a tea party wave of nasty racist ugly rebukes are posted in response.  The angry posters were calling President Mandela a racist murder of whites, a communist thug, a gorilla terrorist, some said he should have died in prison, one comment said President Obama should be imprisoned just like Mandela, others expressed disappointment in Newt for posting kind words about President Mandela.  Comment after comment of this vitriol spilled out on Newt’s Facebook page for all to see.  Tea Party darling Ted Cruz wrote some kind words about Mandela on his page and received the same ugly backlash as Newt.  In an interview with CNN over the weekend Newt said he was shocked by all the negative comments.  Newt may have been shocked, but I and a lot of other progressives weren’t shocked at all.  Since the day Barack Obama won the presidency there’s been a very visible raise in racial tension throughout conservative America.  Any black person who talks about racism or tries to point out racism or even engages in a discussion that touches anything dealing with race makes the tea party go absolutely crazy.  Go to any conservative message board and read some of the comments.  When the movie “12 Years A Slave” came out I searched for movie reviews on it to see what it was about but instead I found page after page of the most disgusting vile racist nonsense I’ve ever read. Conservative media has fed their followers a false narrative about why the economy is so slow at recovering, about why they can’t find jobs, about why upward mobility and the ladder to the middle class has completely disappeared.  Who’s to blame?  The usual suspects of course.  Minorities and undocumented immigrants.  Every problem in the United States is caused by minorities and undocumented immigrants.  Newt shouldn’t be surprised because he has helped cultivate this nonsense. Him and right wing media guys like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Bill O’Riley etc.  They find ridiculous ways to link every single issue to minorities and undocumented immigrants.  They have tapped into the angst and anger of ultra conservative whites who feel marginalized by the changing racial makeup of this country’s citizens which will eventually make whites a minority.  Conservative media are constantly telling them that they are the real victims of racism.  Minorities are the “takers” living off the hard work of the “makers”.  To them Mandela and Obama are the same because they are both black leaders… and their very existence is offensive to them.  Newt plays the game but he knows it’s a game.  The people who follow and listen to him and other conservative media personalities aren’t aware that there’s a game being played. They are true believers.  To them Obama is a Kenyan muslim who hates white people and hates America. They actually believe that & won’t accept facts that tell them otherwise.  Even though Newt stood up for Mandela and chastised those tea party nuts who left the misguided comments, he can’t throw up his hands and pretend that he has no idea where the hate and vitriol comes from.  It comes from you Newt.  They learned it from you.

 

A Few Examples of Newt Gingrich’s History Of Racially Offensive Comments:

“I’m prepared, if the NAACP invites me, I’ll go to their convention and talk about why the African-American community should demand paychecks and not be satisfied with food stamps.” – Gingrich, at a town hall meeting in New Hampshire

On September 12, 2012 Gingrich told National Review Online that “Obama has pretended to be normal but actually seems to be engaged in Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior”.  He went on to say “What if [Obama] is so outside our comprehension, that only if you understand Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior, can you begin to piece together [his actions]?  This is a person who is fundamentally out of touch with how the world works, who happened to have played a wonderful con, as a result of which he is now president,”

An April 1, 2007, Associated Press reported that Gingrich described bilingual education as teaching “the language of living in a ghetto” and mocked requirements that ballots be printed in multiple languages.

Mandela & Michelle Obama

Nelson Mandella

The first lady Michelle Obama traveled to visit South African President Nelson Mandela in 2011.  Today we all learned of his death and even though everyone around the world were aware of his advanced age and failing health, it still shocks and saddens us all.  In honor of this extraordinary man’s relationship with this country and the Obama’s I want to post what the first lady wrote following her first visit to meet him.

Today, we arrived in South Africa, and I couldn’t be more excited, because two years ago, I visited this country for the first time with my mother and daughters, and it was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. 

On that visit, I met with young women leaders from across the continent who were serving their countries and their communities – educating young people, providing job training for women, working to combat poverty and violence and disease – often in the face of impossible odds.  I also had the chance to spend time with young people from here in South Africa: I danced with children at a daycare center, visited the University of Cape Town with local high school students, and took part in a children’s soccer clinic at one of the stadiums used in the 2010 World Cup.

I also had the chance to meet President Nelson Mandela at his home in Johannesburg, an experience that I will never forget.  Mandela – or “Madiba” as he’s referred to in South Africa – is truly a giant in world history.  As a young man, he led a movement against Apartheid – the South African government’s policies that discriminated against people of color, forcing them to live in separate neighborhoods and attend separate schools and prohibiting them from even voting in national elections.  For his defiance, Mandela was jailed for 27 years, and his struggle became a source of inspiration for people all around the world.

 

Mrs. Obama Meets With Former South African President Nelson Mandela

First Lady Michelle Obama meets with former President Nelson Mandela of South Africa at his home in Houghton, South Africa, June 21, 2011. Mrs. Obama viewed items from President Mandela’s archives earlier during a tour of the Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg. (Official White House Photo by Samantha Appleton)

After he was finally released from prison in 1990, Mandela worked to dismantle the Apartheid state and replace it with a full democracy – and in 1994, four years after he was released from prison, he became the South Africa’s first black President. Today, Mandela is 94 years old. As I mentioned in my first post, he’s currently in the hospital, and he is very much in my thoughts and prayers right now. He has been such a source of hope for so many people for so long, and when I reflect on Mandela’s life and legacy, I think about his courage and determination – enduring nearly three decades in jail without ever giving up on his dream of a more just and equal South Africa.  It’s amazing to think about everything he’s seen during his lifetime: the horrors of Apartheid, the quiet desolation of a jail cell, but also the realization of a vibrant South African democracy.  I’m so glad that he lived to see the fruits of his struggle and sacrifice – and I’m so glad that he never gave up on his dream of a better country and a better world for future generations.  As President Mandela once said, “Our children are the rock on which our future will be built.”

That’s exactly how I feel as well.  And that’s why, during my time in South Africa, I’m going to once again reach out to as many young people as I can – and I’m going to try to connect these young people with young people back home in America as well.  Because I know that if young people like you all can share your stories and learn from each other’s experiences, then we’ll all be able to keep moving forward, and together, we’ll be able to build upon Nelson Mandela’s legacy for years to come. 

 

*FULL TRIBUTE COMING SOON*

Obama vs Putin

www.sociallyurban.com

Russian President Vladimir Putin presented his case for caution in Syria directly to the American people. Putin wrote an op-ed for Thursday’s New York Times that went live online Wednesday night. In the article he titled “A Plea for Caution From Russia” Putin warned that a potential strike by the United States in Syria could unleash a new wave of terrorism, increase violence and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. He goes on to list a number of other possible negative outcomes resulting from a US missile attack, but everything he wrote in this piece has already been said. There was absolutely no new information in this article at all. After I finished reading his list of helpful warnings, to me the whole thing made him look like a slick opportunist trying to snub the president while taking advantage of America’s current foreign relations dilemma knowing that our president is in a tough situation domestically. Although Putin makes a few good points in his op-ed and on the surface he may seem sincerely concerned, we still must remember who this man is, and what he is capable of. Putin is a former KGB thug who behaves more like a dictator than an elected president. He talks about respecting international law and norms but rarely does this himself.

Remember the name Paul Klebnikov? He was an American journalist writing for Forbes Magazine. Because of his knowledge about Paul Klebnikov Russian business Forbes reassigned him to Moscow to head a Russian version of Forbes. While he held that position he published a number of scathing articles about Putin and other Russian billionaires and soon after started to receive death threats. After a year in his new position he was found murdered and authorities said it looked like a professional hit. President Bush appealed directly to Vladimir Putin for help in finding those responsible and Putin refused. That murder was never solved and after that there were no more scathing articles written in Russia about Putin. So even if President Obama wanted to write a response op-ed to be published in Russia, he would have a very hard time finding a publication to publish it. Things like this occur in Russia every day but Putin sits on his high horse to lecture us Americans about what’s right and just.

Putin’s op-ed also makes a case for nonintervention when it comes to foreign governments. This is almost laughable Edward Snowdencoming from him because he refused to extradite NSA hacker Edward Snowden (who stole US government secrets) so he could face trial by the American Justice System. This does not sound like a man who wants to help Americans out of the kindness of his heart. I’m not even going to get into the atrocities Putin has bestowed upon his neighboring country of Chechnya and their ongoing contentious sometimes violent relationships with Latvia, Lithuania. And I don’t remember Mr. Putin and his government calling on the UN security council in 2008, when they decided to intervene in Georgia. The intentions and motivations of this stubby 3ft little man is to embarrass our president and make us look like war hungry aggressors. You don’t write a piece like this if diplomacy is what you’re seeking. Granted President Obama’s perceived indecisiveness opened the door rather wide for foreign critique but when it comes from someone like Putin the hypocrisy is inescapable.

There was one point in Putin’s op-ed that I did agree with, it was the part about “American Exceptionalism”. Every time former President Bush would bring this up in a speech or press conference I couldn’t help but roll my eyes. When President Obama said it in his address to the nation last night it made me cringe. Coming from an African American president who’s witnessed the dangers of elevating one race over another to justify inequality, he should know better. No matter who you are or where you were born, we were all created equal in the eyes of God.

My position on Syria has not changed or wavered one bit. I think it’s a mistake for us to bomb them for using chemical weapons. Diplomacy diplomacy diplomacy, we have to give it a chance. Launching missiles to bomb a country who does not pose an immediate threat to our country is absolutely positively the wrong thing to do. I can sympathize with the president’s position and I understand why he feels so strongly about punishing Syria for gassing all of those children and innocent bystanders.  I’ve seen the video footage and I agree that no human should be able to do that without consequences, but we must exhaust every possible avenue before we try to solve it with our military. I want to see the senator Barack Obama from ten years ago when he was anti-war and voting no on the war in Iraq. Where did that guy go?  When you or I watch the news and see horrible things going on around the world there’s not much we as average citizens can do about it.  But when you’re the president of the most powerful nation on earth and you see senseless suffering, I’m sure that need to do something is even stronger because you have the power to do something.  That moral obligation weighs heavy on every US president.  But there are limits to American power.  The rest of the world understands this… we as proud American citizens are slowly realizing this as well. Number of refugees fleeing Syria

Bad Week For Obama

Socially Urban Obama Blog

This has not been a good week for our president… stating the obvious I know, but he’s taking heat from all sides, both left and right.  Some of it is warranted but most of it only exist in the minds of republicans or manufactured within the 24 hour news cycle to raise a ratings slump that’s been stagnant and/or lagging ever since the presidential election ended in November.  I hate to see the President on the ropes like that so I’m going to break it down and help him out a bit (like he’s going to read my blog or solicit my advice lol).

Late Friday evening a story leaked out accusing the IRS of unfairly targeting right-wing groups who filed for nonprofit status.  After the story broke the IRS released a statement acknowledging the unfair targeting and extra scrutiny these applications were getting.  President Obama held a press conference to address this issue and told the press that they were launching an investigation, and he was very emphatic about finding out who was responsible and promised to deal with them accordingly.  I’m a very liberal democrat (surprise surprise) and I’m not a fan of the Tea Party (an even bigger surprise) but wrong is wrong.  Anyone at the IRS who had anything at all to do with this should be fired and prosecuted in a criminal court.  President Obama also said that he had no prior knowledge of this happening until the day before the story leaked, and it’s pretty obvious that he had nothing to do with the IRS placing extra scrutiny on the right-wing groups applications.  Common sense would tell anyone that the White House and President Obama had absolutely nothing to gain by delaying nonprofit 501c applications.  He’s extremely intelligent and pragmatic so he would never risk his presidency for something as stupid and insignificant (relatively speaking) as this .  But the republicans haven’t figured this out yet.  They’ve alluded to cover ups of mass proportions all week on any media outlet that will give them airtime.  Normally this wouldn’t be such a huge deal.  Admittedly the IRS was wrong and they should take responsibility for letting this happen and be punished.  But the far right-wingers want to make this all about President Obama and they’ll continue to feed these delusional theories to their base buffet style as long as they keep eating it up.  So the quicker the president resolves this situation the better.  He needs to wrap the investigation up ASAP and be brutal quick and indiscriminate with the firings of some top IRS officials and do it in a very public way.  When dealing with political scandals whether they are real or manufactured, perception is everything.  Republicans rarely deal in reality so you have to beat them at their own game.  PERCEPTION IS EVERYTHING.  Start demagoguing the hell out of every press conference when these guys start to come for you.  So, that’s my advice on the IRS issue.  On the scandal scale it gets a 2 out of 10 (10 being Watergate or the Iraq war, and 1 being Jimmy Carter lusting in his heart lol).

The second scandal is a lot more serious and actually merits even more attention than it’s already getting.  Earlier in the week the Justice Department secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperative’s top executive called a “massive and unprecedented intrusion” into how news organizations gather the news.  Attorney General Eric Holder and the Obama administration did this without a warrant, without honoring the First Amendment, and contrary to normal procedure where they could have asked the Associated Press to cooperate and if they declined then they could take it court and let a judge decide.  Prior to this incident that is the way the DOJ has handled similar situations in the past.  This story troubles me the most, and it’s the most confusing issue I have with President Obama.  I voted for him twice thinking he wanted to do things a lot different from his predecessor.  Obama promised me and everyone who voted for him a more transparent government. Then he does a 180 and instead of walking back some of the civil liberty infringements of George Bush’s Patriot Act, he adds to it with things like warrantless phone taps on law abiding citizens, increasing the number of DRONE attacks, and assassinating secret targets without telling congress and without any due process.  For most of his first term in office he wouldn’t even acknowledge that the drone attacks were coming from us.  That doesn’t sound transparent to me at all.  Don’t get me wrong, I think the President is doing a great job as commander in chief, and I don’t regret voting for him at all.  But when it comes to foreign policy and protecting civil liberties I am extremely disappointed in that part of his administration’s agenda.  So here’s my advice to the president about this.  First of all he needs to do some restructuring at the Justice Department.  He needs to take the DRONE attack program away from the CIA and give this responsibility to the military.  The CIA is a covert organization so they really can’t be transparent about their operations, and they do not answer to Congress so that means no oversight.  The Military handles these types of things best because they have to get orders, show results, and notify Congress of their actions.  My second piece of advice pains me because I like Attorney General Eric Holder, but like I said before, perception is everything.  President Obama needs to replace Holder with someone else, preferably someone outside of his circle of close friends and advisors.  Someone who is passionate about progressive ideas and an advocate for civil liberties.  Eric Holder was great at his job, but someone’s head has to roll and roll quickly.

It will be interesting to see how the President will handle all of these situations being thrown at him all at once.  I have complete faith in him as a leader because he’s been overcoming major obstacles all his life.  So far he’s risen to meet every set back head on and always comes out unscaved as the victor.  I’m not even going to talk about Benghazi because he’s already won that argument.  The republicans just don’t know yet.  When will they learn that It’s going to take more than the GOP to tarnish this man.

50 Ways To Fix America (If I Were President)

If I were president here are 50 things I’d want to accomplish.

1. Legalize gay marriage and end all policies that were born out of discrimination.
2. Abolish the death penalty (state and federal).
3. Reverse “Citizens United” that gives corporations permission to anonymously funnel unlimited amounts of money into the election process.
4. Create a nonpartisan federal commission to construct and implement guidelines to standardize all elections. No matter what state you live in, your voting process will be identical.
5. Disallow private money in presidential elections. Each candidate will have a federally funded campaign budget. This can be funded by a small tax added to everyone’s driver’s license fees (2 or 3 percent should be enough).
6. Attach the federal minimum wage to the fluctuation of the living wage. (Minimum wage = living wage + 20%)
7. Free health care for all Americans.
8. Create new restrictive regulation on Wall Street to protect our financial system.

a. 2% tax on every stock trade
b. Reinstate the capital gains tax
c. Sever the ties between banks brokerages and hedge funds
d. Limit high speed stock transactions (add another 1% tax for these types of trades)
e. Reinstate the “Glass Stiegel” act and the good parts of “Dodd Frank”

9. Legalize marijuana
10. Limit prison sentences for non-violent offenders and offer rehabilitation programs for first-time offenders instead of prison.
11. End elections for district attorneys and county sheriffs. These positions will be appointed by county commission boards with input from the town’s mayor and the state Attorney General.
12. Close all privately owned prisons.
13. Divert a majority of resources away from the failed war on drugs and use it to improve low income neighborhoods.
14. Make it easier to achieve and maintain a decent credit score.
15. End district attorney job promotions that are based solely on conviction rates.
16. Create legislation that says the government cannot regulate the internet in any way under any circumstances. 100% off limits for the FCC
17. Create a program that offers zero percent interest for student loans.
18. Increase salaries for all teachers and give them performance based bonuses.
19. Legalize work unions in all states.
20. Corporate CEO’s cannot give themselves bonuses if the company did not meet projected earnings for that year. (every time the CEO gets a bonus all workers get one as well)
21. End all drone attacks and reduce the number of American military bases in other countries.
22. Fund a huge government program to encourage organic farming.
23. Heavily invest government funds into legitimate energy alternative research and implementation.
24. Create a program that gives unemployed workers an opportunity to get their unemployment benefits in a lump-sum to start a cooperative with 9 other unemployed workers to start their own company.
25. Ban former senators, legislators, and congressmen from becoming lobbyist after they leave public office.
26. Rebuild America’s crumbling infrastructure which will create a lot of jobs in every state.
27. Make it easier for the poor to get low income housing in nice neighborhoods.
28. Undo tort reform laws and remove judgment compensation limits.
29. Allow illegal immigrants a pathway to citizenship after completing and meeting certain criteria.
30. Ban all assault weapons and extended clip ammunition and require extensive background checks for every weapon sold, given, or traded.
31. Abolish ALL stand your ground laws in every state.
32. Give employers tax incentives for implementing a pension plan for their employees instead of a 401k plan.
33. End the anonymous silent filibuster in the senate.
34. Close tax avoidance loopholes for corporations.
35. End predatory lending in poor neighborhoods (pay-day loans, pawn shop check cashing, & title loans).
36. Fund a program that gives start-up capital to entrepreneur who wants to open a business in their neighborhood (to lessen the amount of outside people who have no ties to the community from owning every store and restaurant.)
37. Make all textbooks digital and give the students a free ipad or laptop in the 9th grade.
38. Offer free high-speed internet for low-income families.
39. Legalize gay adoption in ever state. Gay couples will have to meet the same requirements as straight couples.
40. Implement a 10 year term limit for Supreme Court appointees.
41. Make contraceptives available for all high school students who ask for it (from a guidance counselor who will also give them information about and talk one on one with them about pregnancy, sex and STD’s.)
42. Every public high school must have a gay straight student alliance club.
43. Give tax break incentives for those who register as an organ donor.
44. Break up huge media conglomerates into smaller companies to create a less bias corporate driven media industry.
45. Create a new government office under the FEC whose sole purpose is to monitor the fluctuation in income disparity, and report their findings once a year along with suggested courses of action to return it to a reasonable position.
46. Remove the legislation that protects gun manufactures from being sued for wrongdoing.
47. Ban lobbyist from writing bills and legislation.
48. Close ALL American prisons and detention centers in other countries.
49. Lessen time limits for drug patents and make life-saving drugs obtainable for 3rd world countries.
50. Take a much firmer stance with Israel and strongly push for a two state deal giving Palestinians the land they were forced away from.

I’d have to do all of this in my first term because I’d never win reelection with such a progressive agenda.  Although ideas that seemed far left ten years ago have become centrist.  Especially social issues like marriage equality and women’s reproductive rights.  This shift in public conciseness  is evident by the colossal failure of the republican party in last years presidential election.

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