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Reading: Trump Booed – Civility Police Call for Respecting the Office

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“Respect for the office” is a self-governing citizen’s sin of idolatry. In that context, the Presidency is a graven image. Why should I respect the office of the president when the occupant so clearly doesn’t? Why should I respect the office of the president when it serves as a clubhouse for cheap crooks and mountebanks? Guns don’t kill people, we hear after every mass shooting, only people kill people. So, The Presidency doesn’t commit crimes, only presidents do?

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Reading: Forget Trump’s “Meltdown”—Follow the Testimony

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Early – and very clear – statement of Trump’s scheme. We need the clear statements to unmuddy the waters.

Trump himself, in other words, was putting together a rogue foreign-policy team, run by Giuliani, the President’s private attorney, that would go outside normal N.S.C. and State Department channels to pressure Ukraine. The effort would eventually result in Trump abruptly firing Yovanovitch, the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, at Giuliani’s behest, and withholding a White House meeting from Volodymyr Zelensky, the new Ukrainian President, until he agreed to investigate unsubstantiated allegations involving Biden’s son, and also discredited conspiracy theories involving Ukraine working against Trump in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election. At the same time, Trump was refusing to release hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid to Ukraine, although it had been legally authorized by Congress.

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Reading: Trump’s Global Scandal – The Atlantic

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Reading: George Conway: Trump Is Unfit for Office – The Atlantic

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Your civics lesson for the week.

And so it turns out that impeachment is a more practical mechanism for addressing the fact that Trump’s narcissism and sociopathy render him unable to comply with the obligations of his office. It’s also an appropriate mechanism, because the constitutional magic words (other than Treason and Bribery) that form the basis of an impeachment charge—high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

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Reading: www-m.cnn.com

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A vacant possession.

The problem is that Trump, in his own inimitable way, has created a most imperfect vacuum for the nation. For the foreseeable future the presidency will be both vacant and occupied, with the country reduced to waiting out his tantrum and deciphering its future from a fusillade of tweets and campaign-like rants.
Meanwhile, the nation’s bridges are left to crack, highways buckle, tracks heave, illicit drugs proliferate, medications grow ever-more expensive; diplomats scratch their heads and hind parts, idled by kingly disinterest, allies wonder whether we have their backs or should watch their backs, enemies salivate, polar ice caps slip into the sea, and poor, poor Doral Country Club — under Trump’s storied management — continues, like the rest of us, to struggle.

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Reading: An Ode to ‘Desperate Don’

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It’s not an ode. More of a note towards grappling with reality. Would have been more effective as an ode, but trump doesn’t deserve one.

it is when Trump lies out of desperation, out of the fear of being found out, blamed, reprimanded, possibly even abandoned, that most people can relish it. It is in those moments that Trump is most human and our ire toward this liar is most vindicated and validated.

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Reading: Trump’s Other Impeachable Offense

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Article III explained fro those who have forgotten 1974.

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Reading: A Technical and Cultural Assessment of the Mueller Report PDF | PDF Association

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Media archeology. The DoJ preserves the aura of the unique original by drawing mustache on the distributed copy.

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Reading: Mueller report. Here’s what you need to know: ██ ██ ███ ███████ █████ ███ ██ █████ ████████ █████ • The Register

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The Register offers up an essay by erasure of a report by erasure of a ****-**** by any other name.

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Reading: Bret Easton Ellis Thinks You’re Overreacting to Trump | The New Yorker

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A rational exchange about Trump. Ellis is flat and disconnected from the topic. Maybe he’s offering up despair to counter the hysteria he sees in everybody else.