The company you keep

Even parents who are not helicopter parents have concerns over the friends their children make. These friends can be positive or negative influences. My wife and I opened our house to our kids’ friends – we loved the chaos, but also got to meet them.

Speaking of the company you keep, on yet another Friday night cleansing, the president announced he would commute the sentence of his confidant Roger Stone. Stone was convicted of lying to Congress and more and is a self-professed dirty trickster, which still puzzles me why anyone would brag about that?

Stone is a contemporary of Paul Manafort, who also went to jail for more than a few malfeasances related to unreported foreign dealings and income. Manafort served as Trump’s campaign manager for over four months.

Michael Flynn pleased guilty to lying to the FBI twice, but that does not seem to matter now to some. What is also not reported enough, is the FBI did not pursue other legitimate charges of not reporting relationships with foreign governments and conducting government business before being sworn in. The FBI wanted his help, so they made a plea deal.

And, it still puzzles me why the president commuted the sentence of disgraced former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich. Blagojevich marketed for money the Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama when he became president. That is both illegal and highly unethical.

These are the kind of people the president values. Maybe this is part of the reason he fawns over autocratic-type and brutal leaders from Russia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Philippines, North Korea, Brazil, etc.

It also interests me how he demeans, denigrates and eventually forces out people who are more loyal to the Constitution than to him. People who testified under oath at great risk over concerns, Inspector Generals who wrote reports or raised concerns inconsistent to whatever tactic the president was employing and, of course, whistleblowers who raised concerns with the hope of some protection have come under fire. Names like Alex Vindman, Fiona Hill, Michael Atkinson, Mitch Behm, Glenn Fine, Christi Grimm, Steve Linick, et al are American heroes run out of Dodge by the corrupt sheriff. It also is frustrating to watch Senators and Congresspeople throw these folks under the bus.

I have been a broken record with Republican Senators and my two Republican Congressman (the first had to resign over unreported conflicts of interest) sharing my concerns about the most corrupt and deceitful president in my lifetime, including Richard Nixon. I would ask them what will you have to defend next week, the week after, next month…?

I recall Republicans making a big deal out of Obama not wearing s flag pin. How unpatriotic! But, now it is OK that a president prefers the company of criminals, he takes the side of Putin over his own intelligence people, he does not bother to study key briefings endangering Americans, he is far more untruthful than he is not beating up on those who try to tell the truth, so badly botching a COVID-19 response using misinformation and finally promoting racial injustice dividing America.

These are questions that stymie me, and the sycophants who look the other way are abetting this corruption. But, don’t take my word for it, Google all those names above and determine for yourself. Ask why are the various groups treated so differently by this president?

19 thoughts on “The company you keep

  1. An excellent post! Colin Powell once said : “A mirror reflect’s a man’s face, but what he is really like is shown by the kind of friendships he chooses.” There cannot be any doubt as to what sort of man trump is and his actions, both past and present, only provide further proof of his corruption. Since you mentioned the flag pin, forgive me but…every time that I see trump wearing a flag pin I want to rip it from his lapel! He is not worthy of wearing Old Glory, nor are many of the other GOP Senators who unfailingly support trump. Thank-you!

    • Well said, Ellen. The flag pin is a prop to some and less a symbol. In Trump’s case, it is a prop just as the bible serbed as a prop at his photo shoot. You are right to feel disdain for his motives. Keith

    • Janis, many Americans are just worn out by this person. Seemingly every issue must revolve around his ego and it is just tiresome. If he cannot add value, he needs to stop talking. Keith

  2. Janis, Ellen and Keith. I sense your weariness! “Convicted of lying to Congress”, and then pardoned by he who is sworn to uphold of your Constitution?
    On behalf of Tasmania, y’all welcome Downunder, where we eschew such egregious behaviour. Those who have already expatriated love it here, you will too.

    • David, many thanks for the invitation. It would be nice to travel downunder. Hopefully, enough Americans will wise up to this corrupt person and send him packing. Keith

      • Janis, true. And, Trump’s press secretary had the audacity to say we are the envy of the world on handling COVID-19. Of course, the exact opposite is true. What did George Orwell call this – doublespeak? Keith

      • Janis, We’ll be happy to have y’all. Few countries are currently permitting o/seas folk at with this Wuhan Virus thang goin on. The expats i know here are real pleased. Australia has had the leadership to manage and we have had just over 100 deaths in a population of 25 million. my guess is that this would translate in your country of 300 million to an expected death toll of 1000 folk. i hear the toll is a little higher?

    • Erika, the US president has been born in privilege, so rules do not apply. He and his father were sued for discriminatory housing practices and either lost or settled. The judge ordering them to make amends, which was ignored. They were sued again and finally complied. The law is just a suggestion to Trump. Keith

  3. Note to Readers: Republican Senator Mitt Romney wrote the following about the president’s commuting Stone’s sentence, “Unprecedented, historic corruption: an American president commutes the sentence of a person convicted by a jury of lying to shield that very president.”

    Since the president wants to re-litigate the Mueller invesitigation, he has opened up a can of worms. Please read Robert Mueller’s piece to emphasize the gravity of what he found, about Stone and others. Attorney General Barr cannot whitewash this for the president. Twelve people without conflict of interest said Stone is guilty. The person with conflict of interest commutes his sentence.

    • Note to Readers PS – Senator Mitt Romney is joined by an unlikely source, Republican Senator Pat Toomey, who is quoted with Romney in Politico:

      “While I understand the frustration with the badly flawed Russia-collusion investigation, in my view, commuting Roger Stone’s sentence is a mistake,” Toomey said. “He was duly convicted of lying to Congress, witness tampering and obstruction of a congressional investigation conducted by a Republican-led committee.”

      Our friend Jill has included the Robert Mueller op-ed in her recent Filosofa’s Worc post. It is worth the read.

  4. Keith you say
    “Since the president wants to re-litigate the Mueller invesitigation, [investigation] he has opened up a can of worms”
    For the sake of your country, Lord please make it so.

    • David, when someone is guilty and has been able to survive, the best course is to change the subject and move on. So, openlng this can of worms, invites more scrutiny. His ego cannot handle criticism, even when it has merit.

      So, he invited Mueller to clearly state that Roger Stone is a convicted felon and here is why. He invited two Republican Senators to use the word corrupt with Trump’s name attached.

      I hope more Republicans Senators take their head out of the sand and state the obvious. Keith

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