Friday, February 10, 2017

Trump's Host of Controversies

The controversy of the moment is the unacceptable and un-Christian action taken by Trump to stop Muslim refugees from seven countries from entering the United States. The problems with Trump’s order are several, it was sudden and to all appearances not based on any new intelligence or even the recommendation from his National Security team. The order appears to be unconstitutional at least to the eyes of the acting Attorney General, Sally Yates, who he fired for doing her job. I say, for doing her job, because her oath of office calls for her to defend the constitution and her job is to provide counsel to the president so he doesn’t violate it. Yates told him the order was wrong and told her staff not to defend the indefensible in court and she was fired for it. Had she done his bidding Yates would have been complicit in the crime just as the German soldiers were who claimed they were just following orders as they gassed Jews in places like Auschwitz.

Trump’s action on refugees is far from the only issue worthy of protest. Hearings are still going on for his often incompetent, occasionally dangerous, possibly criminal, and sometimes unethical nominees for cabinet posts as well as a terrible nominee for Supreme Court justice.

So we have a C student from Texas A&M nominated to head the Department of Energy which among other vital tasks is responsible for the safety and maintenance of our nuclear arsenal. Yes, it’s former Governor Rick Perry, the same incompetent dullard who ran for president and wanted to eliminate the Department of Energy entirely except he couldn’t remember its name during the debate. Now he says he hadn’t realized how important the agency is. Don’t you think the responsible thing to do before you suggest eliminating something is to find out what it does?

Then there’s Betsy “Billionaire” DeVos who never saw a public school she didn’t want to dismantle to feed her investment portfolio and has been nominated for Secretary of Education. Senator Al Franken asked DeVos for her views on the controversy over mastery versus improvement for judging student achievement and teacher competence. Sadly DeVos is so incompetent she didn’t even understand the question let alone have a coherent response. For someone who claims to be informed about education in general and public schools in particular Betsy “Billionaire” seems mighty ignorant.

Trump’s dangerous nominee for the job of among other things defending civil rights is a man with a history of using his position to prevent minorities from exercising those civil rights. The nominee is Jeff Sessions who was previously denied a federal judgeship by a Republican controlled Senate due to his racist actions in attempting to prosecute African American voter registration volunteers for doing their best to turn out voters to the polls. Sessions also took credit for prosecutions while a US Attorney for which he didn’t even exercise oversight let alone actively participate.

For a potentially criminal and certainly unethical nominee there’s Tom Price who is Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Health and Human Services. He’s been proven to have invested in medical product companies then used his position as chair of the committee overseeing them to improve their profits thus fattening his own wallet.

Finally, there’s Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s nominee for justice on the Supreme Court. Gorsuch decided the Hobby Lobby case which defying all logic allows a business to claim it has religious rights just like a natural person. He opposes regulation of businesses, so it’s OK if the coal mine poisons the water for everyone downstream.

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