The Atlanta Press Club and Georgia Public Broadcasting are making available debates among candidates in key races in the primary election scheduled for May 22. The debates are available either live as they occur or via on-demand streaming. The debates cover races for Governor, Lt. Governor, Insurance Commissioner, Secretary of State, State School Superintendent, Public Service Commission districts three and five, and Congressional Districts six, seven and ten. Visit the Atlanta Press Club site for schedules and details.
Washington Post columnist Kathleen Parker today published a column “Decent society is unraveling right in front of us.” Her most immediate motivation came from the incident involving members of the Syracuse University chapter of the Theta Tau fraternity, who simulated a sexual assault on a disabled student during an initiation ceremony. But Ms. Parker views the “fraternity gone bad” as “a symptom of a larger cultural disruption”—the waning regard for simple decency in American life. The incident, she says, should horrify anyone with an ounce of decency, “assuming people still recall what decency is.”
Ms. Parker does not mention the Republican Party or Donald Trump, but her words describing an absence of decency leap from the page as explicit descriptions of Trump and his Republican minions:
- “appalling and disgusting on many intersecting grounds””
- “these overcast days of indecency, cruelty and behavior bereft of empathy”
- “a fresh episode in what should be understood as a gradual unraveling of decent society.”
Remember Trump’s mocking of a handicapped person in a campaign speech?
Ms. Parker most telling words are these: “Permissiveness in the guise of non-judgment has aided in the triumph of selfish expression predicted by cultural historian Christopher Lasch in his 1979 book, ‘The Culture of Narcissism.’ ”
“Somewhere in his imagination, he may have envisioned a future president who would act out his infantile impulses on the world stage when he wrote that ‘the logic of individualism’ would be carried to ‘the extreme of a war of all against all, the pursuit of happiness to the dead end of a narcissistic preoccupation with the self.’ ”
What better description of Donald Trump has ever been written? Two companion pieces in today’s Post elaborate on the theme:
Since the dawn of the age of Trump-as-president nearly three years ago, IndieDems has pointed out that he and his Republican followers are creating an America bereft of decency. Trump’s allies include most particularly Georgia’s own Johnny Isakson, David Perdue, Barry Loudermilk, and Karen Handel.
Georgia Republicans Comfortable with Colleagues’ Racist Speak
Georgia Republicans Follow Trump into the Sewer
Georgia Republicans’ Separation from Basic American Values
Georgia Republicans Welcome Dr. Strangelove as National Security Chief
The Known Facts about the Crime and Malfeasance in Trumpgate
Republican Family Values in Full Flower
How Does David Perdue Betray America? Let Us Count the Ways…
(You can substitute any Georgia Republican’s name for Perdue’s)
Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank has addressed President Trump’s recent words referring to immigrants “breeding” in America’s sanctuary cities. He points out that the use of the term and its companion, “inbreeding,” has been a staple of racist bigots and anti-Semites throughout history, most notably by Hitler and the Nazis, e.g., Nazi propaganda from 1944:
“Jewry is the product of the inbreeding of asocial, criminal, sick, degenerate, and rejected elements. . . . [It] leads a rootless, parasitic life at the expense of the host peoples. Its current homeland is largely the criminal neighborhoods of the great cities of the world.”
Milbank goes on to provide examples of current Republicans likening immigrants and minorities to breeding animals:
- Trump appointee Carl Higbie resigned after the publishing of his earlier complaints that black women think “breeding is a form of government employment.”
- Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.) has spoken of immigration policy as “allowing any kind of vagrant, or animal . . . to come in.”
- Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), a Trump ally, described the screening of immigrants: “You get the pick of the litter and you got yourself a pretty good bird dog.”
- Dan Stein, the president of the anti-immigrant Federation for American Immigration Reform, famously said immigrants are conducting “competitive breeding” to dilute the white majority.
- White nationalist Richard Spencer’s National Policy Institute frets about white “displacement by the subject race through differential fertility rates and interracial breeding.”
- Alex Jones’s Infowars, which Trump has also celebrated, has published headlines saying things such as “Top Imam: Muslim Migrants Should Breed With Europeans to ‘Conquer Their Countries.’ ”
The most significant aspect of all this for Georgians is the fact that Georgia Republicans like Johnny Isakson, David Perdue, Barry Loudermilk, and Karen Handel–by their silence–show that they are quite comfortable with such speech. But do not doubt Georgia Republicans’ innate morality. Why, any day now, they are likely to erupt with a denunciation of Nancy Pelosi as the embodiment of all evil.
And–gasp!–have you heard about Hillary’s private email system?
“With the blessing of Republican leaders, the lickspittle wing of the GOP is now firmly in charge. The existence of reckless partisans such as Nunes is hardly surprising. The nearly uniform cowardice among elected Republicans is staggering. One is left wishing that Obamacare covered spine transplants. The Republican-led Congress is now an adjunct of the White House. The White House is now an adjunct of Trump’s chaotic will.” –Michael Gerson, conservative (traditional) newspaper columnist and former George W. Bush speechwriter, in his column “The Cowardice among Republicans is Staggering,” February 5, 2018.
IndieDems note: The following by no means covers all the acts and words by Donald Trump that Senator Perdue has supported, condoned, or tolerated. But…who knows what might follow—or what more research might reveal—that could delay publication? So, here’s the first draft of what is likely to be a continuing serial.
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President who has thrown God’s Ten Commandments overboard—especially the ones about not lying and not committing adultery.
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President whose virtually every tweet and utterance shows disregard for Jesus’ Golden Rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
David Perdue betrays America by abandoning any semblance of exercising Congressional oversight of Trump’s Executive Branch and by joining the Republican herd in displaying staggering cowardice toward Donald Trump.
- What may have begun as Perdue’s temporary political compromise with Trump has become an indelible moral stain.
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President who praises Vladimir Putin and delayed taking any action against Russia’s flagrant use of cyberwarfare and disinformation to interfere in America’s elections. President Trump for months explicitly ignored a law passed by the U.S. Congress calling for sanctions against Russia for election meddling and aggression against Ukraine.
- David Perdue violates his oath of office to uphold the Constitution and laws of the United States and does nothing while the United States #1 enemy delivers hammer blows against U.S. national interests.
Editorial note: On February 13, 2018, the six chiefs of our intelligence services appeared before a Senate committee to report: Russia Likely to Meddle in 2018 Races, Officials Tell Senators. Here are excerpts that show what David Perdue has done little about:
- “In an effort to deepen political divisions, U.S. intelligence chiefs said, Moscow is using fake accounts on social media — many of them bots — to spread disinformation.”
- The warnings were striking in their contrast to President Trump’s (and David Perdue’s) views on Russia.
Continued: David Perdue betrays America and his office by continuing to support a President whose assertion that Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation is a hoax was blown to smithereens by the facts in Mueller’s indictment of 33 Russians for waging a massive covert campaign to distort America’s democratic process by inciting political conflict and discord.
David Perdue doubles down on his betrayal of America and his office by continuing to support a President who, in response to the indictments, issued an irrelevant statement that the indictments showed no collusion between his campaign and the Russians—while refusing to propose any concrete actions to punish Russia for waging war on the United States.
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President who compounds his inaction against Russia by lavishing praising on the dictatorial, murdering thug Vladimir Putin.
David Perdue betrayed America by approving the release of the memo released by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Nunes, a memo roundly denounced even by some Republican as failing miserably to make its intended case that the FBI is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Democratic Party.
- The Perdue-approved effort ended in a pathetic fizzle. Nunes’ brief, amateurish document failed to demonstrate that FBI surveillance was triggered solely or mainly by a Democratic-funded dossier.
- But for cherry-picking above and beyond the call of duty, Nunes and Perdue deserve their own exhibit in the hackery hall of fame.
David Perdue betrayed America and showed his lack of a moral conscience by approving Trump’s actions in the Rob Porter affair, in which someone known by Trump’s staffers to be a wife beater—including knowing that the charges were responsible for his failure to obtain a security clearance—was kept in his White House job until media revelations forced a decision by Chief of Staff John Kelly.
- Perdue shows no problem with the fact that even after the revelations were made public, the first response of Trump’s Chief of Staff was to issue a press release stating “Rob Porter is a man of true integrity and honor and I can’t say enough good things about him. He is a friend, a confidante and a trusted professional.”
- Just to make sure Trump, Kelly, and Perdue’s view was made clear, Trump press spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders—after Porter announced his departure—stated that Porter still had the White House’s support and that the decision to resign was his own. She continued: “I have worked directly with Rob Porter nearly every day for the last year, and the person I know is someone of the highest integrity and exemplary character. Those of us who have the privilege of knowing him are better people because of it.”
Kelly and Sanders’ praise of wife beater Porter apparently had Perdue’s full approval. He has not publicly stated otherwise.
Only after the media followed up with a photo of one of Porter’s abused former wives sporting a horrible black eye did Donald Trump and John Kelly decide he had to go.
David Perdue showed his contempt for common human decency and morality by continuing to support Trump as President after Trump in a press conference praised Porter, wished him well—and said not one word about the two abused women.
David Perdue betrayed America and showed his lack of a moral conscience by continuing to support Trump even after, two days past Porter’s resignation, another Trump staffer—a speechwriter—resigned after his former wife claimed that he was violent and emotionally abusive.
David Perdue’s contempt for America’s basic moral values continues a pattern he showed when he by continued to support Trump for president after then-Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was shown on video assaulting Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields, and Trump described him as “a very decent man.”
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support Trump as President after incident after incident and tweet after tweet proved how rudderless and dysfunctional the White House remains—and how unfit Perdue’s hero Trump is to be president.
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President whose son-in-law and top aide, Jared Kushner, and dozens of other White House staffers spent over year without security clearance—but were allowed access to the most sensitive and highly classified information in the U.S. Government.
David Perdue doubles (triples?) down on his—and the Republican Party’s—hypocritical betrayal of America by tolerating Trump’s sellout of U.S. national security interests—after spending years in near hysteria claiming that Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email system posed a grave danger to U.S. security, even though nine years after its establishment, Hillary’s emails have caused not one iota of harm to U.S. national interests.
Perdue betrayed America by supporting a President who was warned not to appoint Mike Flynn as National Security adviser, appointed him anyway, and had Flynn subsequently plead guilty to a federal crime.
Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President who forged a close political alliance with Paul Manafort, despite his shady dealings with foreign countries and businesses, and has seen Manafort indicted on federal criminal charges—along with his associate, Rick Gates.
Perdue betrays America by supporting a President who hired George Papadopoulos as a foreign policy adviser—and has seen him plead guilty to a federal crime.
Perdue betrays America by supporting Trump as President after his COS, Kelly, stated publicly that young undocumented immigrants were “too lazy” to sign up for DACA and then doubled down after a public backlash.
David Perdue betrays America by supporting a President who has proven he is a congenital liar, responsible for over 2,000 lies or misrepresentations in one year.
Perdue betrays America by supporting a President who had words of praise for the racists and neo-fascists who marched through the streets of Charlottesville, bearing torches and chanting “Jews will not replace us,” in flagrant imitation of the Nazis.
Perdue betrays America by supporting a President who labeled Haiti and African countries as “shitholes.” (Even Perdue’s Senate colleague, Johnny Isakson, managed a rap on Trump’s knuckles for this one—the supreme act of rebuke for Trump lackeys like Isakson and Perdue. House Speaker Paul Ryan is the all-time champion of issuing these meaningless verbal reprimands—which, of course, reinforce rather than diminish what a toady the “critic” is.)
Perdue betrays America by supporting a President who prefers to surround himself with toadies constitutionally incapable of standing up to him and prepared to pay the price of slathering him with praise.
- Perdue could have no doubt about the banana republic Trump is transforming the United States into after, at Trump’s first full Cabinet meeting in June, the attendees attempted to outdo each other in delivering gushing, sycophantic praise of their leader—a display reminiscent of a gathering of the top aides of Adolph Hitler or Benito Mussolini—or Idi Amin.
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President who endorsed a candidate for the U.S Senate who was an accused child molester who had also showed contempt for the rule of law by twice defying court-ordered restraints on his behavior.
Perdue’s Republican Party also officially endorsed the candidate.
Perdue betrays America by supporting a President who was forced to withdraw his controversial nominee to head the Council on Environmental Quality, after even some Republicans questioned her credentials.
David Perdue betrays America by continuing to support a President who was forced to withdraw three of his nominees for federal judgeships after their unfitness was revealed.
- One nominee, during his Senate confirmation hearing, was unable to answer basic questions about the courtroom process, showed little familiarity with federal trial rules, and acknowledged that he had never prosecuted or defended a case.
- Another also had scant trial experience and apparently had spoken favorably about the Ku Klux Klan under a pseudonym on a website.
- The third once described transgender children as proof of “Satan’s plan.”
David Perdue betrays America by supporting a President whose appointee as Health and Human Services Secretary, Tom Price, who resigned in disgrace in September after he was found to have spent $400,000 chartering private jets at taxpayer expense.
David Perdue betrays America by accepting as normal the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt, after revelations that Pruitt was:
- Living for $50 a day in a Washington condo owned by the wife of a powerful fossil fuel lobbyist whose client was recently given the green light by the EPA to expand a pipeline project. The lobbyist had previously donated to Pruitt’s campaign for attorney general in Oklahoma and even hosted a fundraiser for him.
- Regularly flying first class and being accompanied by large security team, although there is no know threat to Pruitt that would warrant such expensive coverage
- For a more detailed look at the corruption of Scott Pruitt, read “Scott Pruitt Is a Cartoon Villain.”
David Perdue betrays America by supporting a President whose appointee as director of the Center for Disease Control, Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, resigned this past January after it was revealed she had recently bought stock in a tobacco company.
- She had spent months recusing herself from various official duties because she owned shares in bio-tech and health-information companies.
(Read the report by a science writer and also Trump Could Help Curb a Potential Pandemic. Instead, He’s Been Silent, about how Trump’s disastrous choices for public-health leadership left the country woefully unprepared for this year’s virulent flu epidemic and will contribute to the flu deaths that will occur between now and summer—deaths for which David Perdue will also bear blame).
David Perdue betrays America and makes it more vulnerable to suffering a catastrophic pandemic by supporting Trump’s massive cuts in the CDC budget—and his proposal for even more cuts. (Read the above articles for details. Quote: “For a fraction of what the president (and Perdue) wants to spend on his pointless barrier with Mexico, we could make ourselves infinitely safer from infectious diseases.”)
Read more on what Senator David Perdue considers competent government:
- David Perdue betrays America by supporting a President who used tweets to abruptly announce he wanted to bar transgender people from the military. Trump’s arbitrary act demeaned the office of President, short-circuited an ongoing military review of the issue, and inflicted emotional suffering on transgender troops who are serving their country with pride and distinction—something, of course, Donald Trump never did.
- David Perdue betrays America by proving over and over again that Trump was correct when he said during the presidential campaign that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and get away with it.
- David Perdue betrays American values and morality by supporting a President who keeps Kelly as Chief of Staff after Kelly attacked Florida Democrat Rep. Frederica S. Wilson as an “empty barrel” and a video showed that Kelly had misrepresented her comments. Kelly vowed he would “never” apologize.
- David Perdue betrayed America by supporting a President who demeaned the military service of John McCain.
- David Perdue betrayed America by endorsing Trump for President after he berated and threatened a federal judge of Mexican heritage; falsely claimed that most illegal Mexican immigrants were criminals and rapists; and called out to a black person at a rally, “Look at my African American.”
- David Perdue betrayed America by supporting a President who calls women bimbos and bragged about sexually assaulting them.
- David Perdue betrayed America by supporting a President who mocks handicapped people.
- David Perdue betrayed America by supporting a President who incited his followers to violence.
- David Perdue betrayed America by supporting a President who foregoes any attempt to forge national unity and appeals to anger, hatred, racism, and frustrations.
- David Perdue betrays America with his continued effusive support for Trump, which has provided political cover for a weakening of the constitutional order. Trump is using Perdue as a tool. The way Perdue is headed, history offers two possible verdicts: Either he enabled an autocrat, or he was intimidated by a fool.
- David Perdue puts his legislative agenda above his own professed principles and the good name of the country so someday he can say, yes, Trump got us into a ruinous trade war but I passed a tax cut for the rich and rimmed a bit off the Affordable Care Act.
Perdue’s response to the recent Mueller indictments, the wife abuse scandals, and the lawsuits involving Trump’s adultery, in short, has continued to display the flaws that have become the hallmark of Trump and Perdue’s character. The scandals have reinforced the fact that the Trump administration and its enablers like David Perdue suffer from a singularly morally bankrupt strain of Republican tribalism. Perdue prizes loyalty to President Trump above all else, and Trump’s failings are ignored.
In short, Trump and Perdue deserve each other. Their country deserves better.
President Trump has selected right-wing hawk John Bolton as his new National Security Adviser. Bolton’s chief credential for the job is his role as a Fox News commentator, the only people Trump listens to for guidance on foreign and domestic policies. In his career as a proponent of extremist foreign policies, Bolton has gained a legitimate reputation as someone right out of Dr. Strangelove.
Bolton has advocated a preemptive war as the only way to prevent North Korea from obtaining the capability to attack the United States with a nuclear missile. He touted “the legal case for striking North Korea first” in an editorial in the Wall Street Journal and has dismissed negotiations with North Korea as a waste of time.
Bolton has been even more hawkish than Trump on Iran, pushing for the president to withdraw from the nuclear agreement that the United States and five other world powers reached with Tehran during the Obama administration.
- In January, Bolton told Fox News that Trump should dump the nuclear deal, reimpose economic sanctions on Tehran, and work toward an overthrow of the government there.
- He similarly called for bombing Iran in a New York Times editorial in 2015. “Our goal should be regime change in Iran.”
Bolton for years also has espoused bringing about regime change in North Korea, saying it would be a good idea for South Korea to “take control” of North Korea.
My comments: Bolton’s “policies” are so over-the-top, off-the-wall lunacy, to even analyze them would give them more than their due. My concerns are more local and prosaic: the response of Georgia Republicans to the fact they have given the United States an Administration hell bent to take us into an unnecessary war that would make GW Bush’s Iraq war debacle look like child’s play.
In particular, I focus on the reaction of Georgia’s Republican Congressional delegation, spearheaded by Senators Isakson and Perdue and Representatives Handel and Loudermilk—and their staffs. Surely, we will hear a “whoosh” as Trump’s Georgia Republicans rush out of their comfortable homes and offices to get to the recruiting office to make sure they are in the front ranks of the soldiers who will be fighting the Trump/Bolton war that is coming soon.
And we have every right in the world to label as coward any Trump supporter eligible for service in our armed forces who is not wearing a uniform.
Unfortunately, Georgia Republicans are more likely, once more, to be willing to sacrifice the lives of tens of thousands, if not millions, of innocent human beings before they are thrown in the dustbin of history. Like the Nazis.
Bolton’s appointment has given new proof that Trump’s Republican Administration is a mirror image of Hitler’s in the 1930s, i.e, before the war and the Holocaust, but long after Hitler’s intentions had become abundantly clear.
Call up the office of your Republican Senator and Congressperson. Ask the staffer who answers how many of the Senator’s/Representative’s relatives will die or be wounded or maimed in the war Trump and Bolton will unleash.
Ask the staffer whether he/she or any their fellow staffers ever served in the armed forces of the United States. If not, ask them when they intend to get to the recruiting office, now that the Republicans have put the U.S. on a war footing.
I’m serious. I’m deadly serious. Make that call.
You might also contact the office of Senator Lindsey Graham who publicly praised Bolton’s appointment. “Pray tell us, Senator. Which of your relatives are going to die in the war Trump and Bolton will unleash? We know for darn sure it won’t be you, don’t we. What a pluperfect armchair warrior you are.”
It’s a done deal, my friend. The Republican Party is now the far right wing, and Republicans will follow Trump and Bolton into war and be willing to sacrifice the last of your children to fight it. That is the horror we and the world now face. The November elections are our only hope, and we may not make it.
The appointment of the war-mongering Bolton, a character right out of Dr. Strangelove, smashes to bits any excuse that a booming economy will justify a vote for Republicans in November. Of course, a 700 point drop in the DJIA last week shows even the economy might not survive Trump and his clueless Republicans.
Bolton’s appointment removes any sliver of hope that Trump is not an insane fool or that Republicans will be able to govern this country. And let there be no doubt: Republicans like Isakson, Perdue, Loudermilk, and Handel gave us this idiot with eyes wide open and continue to worship at his feet.