Dump Trumpism

Last week the FBI completed a follow-up investigation into Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Senators and certain senior staff were permitted to look at one copy of the FBI report, in shifts, in a secure location in the US Capitol. So, neither the scope of the investigation nor its findings have been disclosed to the American public. What did the FBI look at and what did they see? None of your damn business.

On Saturday the Senate voted 50-48 to confirm Kavanaugh and within hours he was sworn in as the 114th justice in the history of the high court.

Republicans have a 51-49 majority in the Senate. One Democrat running for reelection in West Virginia voted with the Republicans. One Republican was absent for a family event, though he said he would have shown up to vote if necessary. And one Republican who said she would have voted against Kavanaugh instead voted “present” for reasons having something to do with the aforementioned absentee, which I don’t pretend to understand.

Did we not want history to reflect a 50-49 vote? Did we not want to push a United States Senator to show up and do the job he was elected to do? Did the one supposed GOP defector not want to go on the record as such?

These are all trivial questions.

What matters is that a majority got whatever they felt they needed to justify putting Donald Trump’s second nominee on the Supreme Court for the rest of his natural life.

Trump, the perpetual sore winner, claimed (falsely) that Kavanaugh had been proven innocent and apologized on behalf of the country for putting him through such an ordeal.

Give me a break. I, for one, am NOT sorry for what Mr. Kavanaugh went through during the past month or so; I am, however, profoundly sorry for what Christine Blasey Ford has been going through for the past 36 years. She didn’t ask for any of this. She didn’t seek publicity, she sought anonymity. She came forward reluctantly and belatedly because she said she felt a duty to do so.

For his part, Kavanaugh says, hey, no hard feelings. Whatever.

Trump is telling his supporters that Democrats are an angry mob. He told a police association that Democrats are anti-police. He said that the Kavanaugh controversy was  a “disgraceful situation, brought about by people that are evil.”

Meanwhile, Mitch McConnell is saying that if Republicans hold the Senate and a Supreme Court vacancy occurs in 2020, he’ll push to fill the vacancy with a Trump nominee. In 2016 McConnell refused to consider Barack Obama’s nominee.

Could there possibly be a stronger argument for supporting Democratic candidates for the House and Senate in 2018, and for the presidency in 2020???

Yes, and that argument is this: the world is running out of time to deal with global warming, and the Republican party is going at full speed in the wrong direction. Here is but one article about this week’s dire report by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (brace yourself).

An unrepentant frat boy on the Supreme Court will seem like nothing compared to the consequences of unchecked greenhouse gas emissions.

We all know the Republican position on the Keystone XL Pipeline (for transporting Canadian tar sands across the US for processing and shipment), the GOP’s love affair with oil & gas interests, Trump’s promises to coal-producing states and Republican eagerness to “drill, baby, drill” virtually everywhere. We know their disdain for the Endangered Species, Clean Water and Clean Air acts. We know their desire to neuter or abolish the EPA.

Trump now even wants to increase the amount of ethanol in gasoline to 15% all year around. A little ethanol in gasoline during cold weather and at higher altitudes helps reduce smog; too much ethanol during warm weather CREATES smog, and it’s very expensive in terms of water, energy and subsidies. It can damage engines and make spills harder to contain. This ethanol ploy is a carrot for big agribusiness in Midwestern states hit hard by his trade war. It would be an economic and ecological boondoggle for everyone else.

In short, the Republican ambition seems to be to exploit every fossil fuel or unsustainable bio fuel to the max as rapidly as possible, before the earth is too hot, dry and polluted for man, beast or corn stalk.

The Kavanaugh vote not only confirmed a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court, it confirmed something much more fundamental: the hijacking of the Republican Party. It’s no longer the party of Lincoln, it’s the party of Trump.

Mitch McConnell says that the Senate is not broken. He says the nation is fine. The nation is not fine. The first step to fixing a problem is admitting you have one. The Republican Party line on climate change is that it’s not happening, there’s no agreement, it’s not that serious, it’s not man-made…

Enough of such nonsense.

Donald Jr. is out stumping for Republicans, telling the base that his dad is on the ballot. Well, Trump isn’t on the ballot, but Trumpism is. Republicans have made themselves a party of Trump toadies.

It’s time to put Trumpism in the trash bin of history while there’s still history to be written. Election Day is November 6th.

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