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Sean Spicer has the hardest job in America. He must continuously spin an alternate reality to people who ask difficult questions like “where’s the proof?” And “what did the president mean when he said…?” I imagine his mind must really be battered as he tries to live on both worlds – the one where he tells reporters that Steve Bannon left the NSC because he accomplished his objectives, and the real one. The reality where Trump’s inauguration crowd was the biggest ever, and the actual one.

After a while, it must begin to affect a person in nefarious ways. How could it not? Living a life where you’re continuously required to invent a completely different reality than the one we all experience is nothing short of mind-blowing.

The healthcare law is a ‘disaster’. Climate science is fake. The list goes on and on and on. Daily, the press secretary is required to fib, massage, or outright lie.

Meanwhile, one must ask themselves, who are they lying to? Certainly not the reporters, who shake their heads in disbelief and write things down wondering why they didn’t become a doctor like their parents wanted.

No, the people who it affects the most are the dumbest. Those who don’t have the ability to reason for themselves and walk around thinking Trump and all his nonsense are real. People like Michael Flynn Jr. who thinks General McMaster must be a communist spy and ISIS sympathizer because he refuses, reportedly by Flynn Jr., to use the term ‘radical Islam’. Good thing he’s not in government.

Spinning alternate realities is bad for everyone. It’s bad for the mental health of the perpetrator who must, on some level, begin to lose his grip on reality. It’s bad for the casualties who can’t discern the truth from the noise, and it’s bad for the country as whole. Half the people are walking around living in a completely different reality than, well, reality.

Trump’s White House appears to be spiraling out of control. There’s already massive controversy, back-biting, leaks, subterfuge, carelessness, betrayal, and a generous helping of alt-facts. It’s been less than a month.

Now, one could argue that things just need to stabilize for Trump and that all he needs is time. But Trump isn’t just in a rough patch. He’s a in a whole new environment. Surrounded by a bureaucracy that he condemns and that despises him, betrayals small and large await in the days ahead, and enemies lurk in the shadows of every building in Washington.

The Republican establishment hates Donald Trump. He scares them for a variety of reasons. He’s unpredictable, spiteful, and a loose cannon. He’s also unversed in many matters of government that would benefit a president.They all know he’s in the wrong place and got there the wrong way. They didn’t want him to begin with and only grudgingly accepted him as he won more and more popular support of their mutual voting base.

But support doesn’t translate to love or loyalty, and the establishment would have an easy time convincing their cohorts to turn on Trump given the right set of circumstances. The reason? Pence. An insider. Far more mainstream than Trump, but very conservative. A dream candidate who handled himself well during the VP debate. The presidency would fit nicely with Republican’s wish list were it handed to Pence. They just need a good reason to oust Trump.

So here’s my prediction.

There’s a very good chance that Republicans are secretly hoping for a good enough reason to impeach. But the catch is that the reason needs to be iron clad or they risk the wrath of Trump’s base. They can’t just impeach, but given something egregious enough, they could do it and oust Trump whilst installing Pence.

By the look of it, it might not be long before something like this comes up. With Russian hacking, a Trump/Russian dossier, and now Mike Flynn and the Russians? It’s hard to ignore all of the Russian ties. Any investigation that shows Donald Trump had any secret contact with the Russians could prove to be a terrific reason to oust him and still maintain the support of the faithful.

I guess we’ll all have to wait and find out.

Trump’s Republicans today killed the Election Commission as part of their continued assault on our freedoms and our right to vote, while still pushing the phony, baseless claim of ‘massive voter fraud’. I haven’t heard of a single person charged with voter fraud. You would think the ‘millions’ of people would be easier to find, eh?
 
Trump plans to rig the next election in his favor with a nefarious combination of voter suppression laws, gerrymandering, and the elimination of this so-called ‘wasteful’ government agency charged with making sure elections aren’t tampered with. Saying it’s shameful doesn’t cover it. California needs to leave the union. I’m sorry, but it’s true. Trump is giving the EPA to a climate change skeptic who has ties to fossil fuel. He’s giving our foreign policy to Exxon, one of the biggest special interests in the country. Our government is quickly becoming too corrupt to salvage under this so-called ‘drain the swamp’ liar.
 
Every day there’s another terrible headline. I can’t even read the news anymore. I think at some point we have to recognize that there’s no longer any middle ground. Either you want your kids praying in public schools, or you don’t. Either you want healthcare for everyone or you don’t. Either you believe in the power of diversity, or you don’t. Either you believe regulation, while more expensive for business, protects people or you don’t.
 
The people I know who support Trump are willing to overlook the obvious danger signs. They claim he doesn’t mean what he says. They claim it makes sense to stuff the government full of morons like Ben Carson and Rick Perry, or billionaires or bankers while they roll back banking rules. They say it doesn’t matter that Trump peddles racism and xenophobia and alternative facts, or has ties to the alt-right and their white nationalist agenda. They are willing to overlook all of it. When they finally realize the full extent of their missteps giving this loose cannon the reigns of power, it may very well be too late.

Did you know both Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren were once Republicans? It’s true. Hillary even worked for Nixon. In fact, you’d be surprised at the big names who have in fact changed parties, for better or worse. Many of them are, to varying degrees, still successful members of the political establishment.

But switching political parties is something that rank and file voters never really think about. Most of us have picked a team and we tend to stay with it, no matter what happens. If ever there was a better case study for proof of this hypothesis, one only needs to look at the Republican party of today.

While Democrats are largely united as a party, the Republican party is fractured. Terms like ‘civil war’, ‘RINO’ and ‘purity test’ pop up regularly in major publications and most observers agree that the party is now split between a grass roots that has moved further and further to the political right and the establishment, moderate class.To make matters worse, Donald Trump has hastened and exacerbated this internal split as the leader of the more extreme right wing, leaving many in the middle unable to endorse or even support their own presidential candidate.

Let’s face it. It’s time to think about leaving the Republican party.

Yes, seriously. You may not like it, but if you’re a moderate, you really don’t have a place there anymore. The general shift in attitude on the right is so extreme that whether you like it or not, your moderate views are less and less tolerable and your own party has terms like RINO to disparage you as ‘not a true conservative’. Who needs that crap?

While I understand that you dislike Hillary and don’t agree with abortion rights or tax policies, those are things that party members can influence. In fact, you probably have move influence as a party member then someone outside the party. Some prominent Democrats today are pro-life. Others are NRA members and yet others are fiscal conservatives. The Democrats really don’t care what you think. You’re not going to hear DINO with derision from any of our members. But the extreme right of your own party is getting out of hand, and frankly, I don’t think they really want you around anymore.

So listen, we’re here, and we’re happy to have you, even if you don’t like taxes, abortion or even immigration policy. Join the party and become a voice of decent if you have too. At least you’re welcome. A big tent means respect for many different ideas, cultures, traditions, languages, and many other things that the Republican party has failed to offer. In an era where the Republicans are more and more hostile to different schools of thought, now is the time to rethink you allegiance. You’re welcome here with us.

A day or two ago, Mike Pence was told by a supporter that she was basically ready to take up arms against the US government if voter fraud was responsible for Donald Trump losing the election. How she would make that determination was unclear, but after listening to the emotion in her voice as she asked her question, it seemed that ANY Trump defeat will be seen by people like her as voter fraud. Furthermore, given Trump’s predilection for crying about his treatment by, well, everyone, he can be expected to willfully fan the flames as well.

Making matters worse, Pence encouraged the idea. Instead of reassuring her of the overall health of the US voting system, he chose to discuss the ongoing investigation of voter fraud is his state, seemingly calling the entire election system into question. He then stepped things up a notch by suggesting that everyone needs to sign up to be volunteer poll watchers to prevent such things from happening as if voter fraud was a routine occurrence in our elections.

Those of us who pay attention know that Donald’s push for ‘poll watchers’ is nothing more than a blatant attempt to dress up voter intimidation in a pretty new outfit by creating the illusion that his supporters are there to help. Don’t be fooled. He just wants his own army of brown-shirts to ‘police’ polling places that they have no business policing.

How could 20 antagonistic (in some locations open-carry) Trump supports be anything BUT intimidating when they linger and leer at minorities trying to enter voting locations? Let’s get real, this is terrifying and dangerous stuff and predicting conflict to follow this scenario isn’t a stretch.

Worse than the demagoguery and private army building is the fact that people like this unfortunate woman aren’t clever enough to know they are being manipulated. They listen to to right-wing radio, watch right-wing TV, and read right-wing press. Then they hear voices like Trump who today suggested the US would literally end and ISIS would take over America if Hillary wins the election. Oh. My. God.

Donald isn’t just nuts, he’s downright dangerous and he’s begun treading into some dark places in his quest for power. With every proclamation of imminent doom, his die-hard followers are becoming more excitable and extreme.

So this begs the question: where does the line between free political speech end and dangerous political speech begin? Does the unthinkable need to actually happen before we recognize our peril?

Demagoguery is dangerous for a reason and if this woman’s worldview isn’t a perfect example of why, then you’re not paying attention. Race bating, fear mongering, and false cries of persecution are the demagogue’s tools. They should not be tolerated to any degree because they lead to conflict. Today it’s just threats, but things will only get worse if this continues.

This is possibly the most important reason we need to defeat Donald Trump. We need to win decisively. The Donald Trumps of the world can’t be allowed to overcome the strength of our republic.

Even before I became a business owner the concept of trickle down economics never made sense to me. The fact that Republicans have so successfully been able to push this concept decade after decade, well let’s just say I find it astonishing.

On its face, trickle down economics makes no sense. Lowering income taxes on the wealthy won’t create jobs. First, employers don’t hire simply because they have money. They hire when they have a need – that is when they have demand for their product or service and they need people in order to accommodate that demand. Why for example would someone who only needed five dishwashers hire more if he had no need for more people? Having the money to hire is beside the point. Either you need people or you don’t.

There’s usually a point where you have spent as much as you can on your business and now it’s time, as a business owner, to take the rest for yourself. Well, if the rest happens to be $50 million, then that is money that is being taken out of circulation for the benefit of the person who made it. So lowering taxes on people who already make hoard-worthy piles of cash is just a give-away in the end, since that’s just extra profits for the business owner to keep.

Also, tax breaks on wealthy income earners means they pay less personal taxes, not corporate taxes. This is money that’s paid to them as a salary. If they were planning on hiring people with that money, they wouldn’t be paying themselves money to begin with. They would leave the money in the business. All an income tax reduction does is let wealthy people keep more money from their paychecks.

Also, while rich people do generate jobs by spending their millions, those paltry numbers pale in comparison to the job growth that would come if that same tax break were given to far less advantaged people who need that money to pay bills. Those people would spend the money, and in so doing, stimulate the economy. A tax break to a wealthy man is worth less economic stimulation than that same tax break being given to lower income earners who actually need the money to pay bills and buy things.

This is the most confusing thing to me about the trickle-down crew. If a millionaire makes more millions, he’s basically going to put it in the bank or buy toys. If a poor or middle class person makes more money via a tax break, he’s probably going to spend it. So it becomes fairly obvious who’s going to stimulate the economy more – the small guy who immediately puts the money back into circulation, not the rich guy with the impressive bank account.

If I got a tax break, all I would end up doing is pocketing the money. If I were rich, it would just make me richer.