Tears of Shame … Again

Periodically, I write a post that begs for the title “Tears of Shame”, or some variation of that.  Since 2016, there have been eight such posts … tonight makes nine.

Healthy debate, civil discourse … I’m all for both of those.  If I make a statement, you have an opposing point of view, then fine … let’s each present our views and see if we can find a middle ground.  Even if we cannot find that middle ground, we will have each gained a better understanding of why we think the way we do.  This is good for a friendship, it is good for opposing factions within a nation, and it is good for international relations – much better than lobbing bombs.  This is how civilized society remains civilized.

However, when two people disagree and one of those people has neither facts nor sound basis for his views, then his only way of expressing himself is likely to be personal attacks and lies.  It is a tactic that, unfortunately, works well for some people, though it has ended many a friendship.  It is also a very unprofessional way to conduct the business of government.

The republican response to the witness testimony in the ongoing impeachment hearings is an example of such.  Testimony after testimony by credible witnesses, career civil service employees and others, has put the republicans at a loss.  They have zero truthful or valid explanations for the actions by Trump, Pence, Pompeo, Giuliani and others.  So … they attack.  Who do they attack?  Everybody.  Adam Schiff, whose job is to conduct these hearings in a professional manner and get to the truth.  They attack the media.  They attack “Democrats” in general.

But, the worst of their attacks are not only vicious, unfounded and brutal … but they have put human lives, the lives of people who have dedicated their entire career to the service of this nation, in danger.  Their attacks on these people, in my opinion, raises the victims of their attacks to an even higher level of esteem, and frankly the attacks make the republicans doing the attacking look like the fools they are.  They also bring down the reputation of the entire Republican Party, where I assume there are some good people. (sarcasm intended)

These attacks would be laughable except for the current climate of hate and divisiveness in this nation – a climate that has been largely created by none other than Donald Trump.  But, they are not laughable, for in this nation we have 40% of the adult population who still support Donald Trump, who do not care about facts, but rather believe whatever Trump and his cronies over at Fox ‘News’ tell them to believe.  And they own guns.  Some of them own lots of guns.  Please note that I am not saying all republicans are bloody idiots that are going to go out and shoot one of these witnesses for speaking against their beloved leader.  Not at all.  However, there is a portion that would consider it their patriotic duty.  You know it and I know it.

A point in case is Alexander Vindman, who testified on Tuesday that he became so concerned during a July 25 phone call in which President Trump asked Ukraine’s president for help with political investigations that he reported his alarm to a superior.  Immediately, Fox ‘News’ personas Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson jumped on the attack wagon.VindmanOn Ingraham’s show, The Ingraham Angle, it was suggested by her guest John Yoo, with no evidence whatsoever, that Colonel Vindman was guilty of ‘espionage’, a felony punishable by death.  It should be noted here that Colonel Vindman received a Purple Heart after he was wounded in Iraq. He is a Ukrainian-American immigrant who was 3 years old when his family fled to the United States.  Even some republicans were incensed by this, including Mitch McConnell, Mitt Romney, and Liz Cheney, daughter of former Vice-President Dick Cheney, who called Mr. Yoo’s accusation “shameful”.

Senator Ron Johnson, a republican from Wisconsin wrote …

“I believe a significant number of bureaucrats . . . resent [Trump’s] un­or­tho­dox style and his intrusion on their ‘turf’. They react by leaking to the press and participating in the ongoing effort to sabotage his policies and, if possible, remove him from office. It is entirely possible that Vindman fits this profile.”

On CNN’s New Day, republican Sean Duffy, a former representative from Wisconsin also called Vindman’s loyalty into question …

“It seems very clear that he is incredibly concerned about Ukrainian defense. I don’t know that he’s concerned about American policy.  He has an affinity, I think, for the Ukraine. He speaks Ukrainian, and he came from the country and he wants to make sure they’re safe and free.”

Tucker Carlson has an even more elaborate conspiracy theory, claiming that the Ukraine has repeatedly asked Vindman to take over their entire military!

And then, Vindman began getting threats against himself and his family.  The U.S. military stands guard and ready to move Colonel Vindman and his family to a secure location on a nearby military base if it is felt that there is an imminent danger.  Other witnesses have also reported getting anonymous threats.  Because they believe that their duty is to the country, not the ‘man’ sitting in the Oval Office.  Because they told the truth.

An attorney for Colonel Vindman, David Pressman, has sent Fox News a letter requesting a public retraction of the comment on Laura Ingraham’s show that suggested Vindman was guilty of espionage.  However, even if Fox retracts and apologizes, it is far too little, too late. Words, once spoken, can never be unheard.

I would ask my republican friends, if in fact I had any left, if this is the legacy they wish to leave, if this is the nation they believe in, and if they are proud of the people, from Donald Trump on down the line, who have so terribly abused those who were willing to tell an uncomfortable truth in order to try to preserve the integrity of this nation.  I, for one, am not proud.  If I were asked by a stranger tomorrow my country of origin, I think I would rattle off the name of the first country I could think of … Sardinia … Cambodia … Sri Lanka.

30 thoughts on “Tears of Shame … Again

  1. Sadly it wasn’t me that said it—

    “Voters get the government they deserve”

    —but I love it. As a true pacifist myself the only government they deserve is the one they win by putting themselves on the line for it. But that never lasts long either.

    I’ve been told often enough that the nearest closest modern approach to the ideal is that practised by the Swiss but I’ve never gone too deeply into it lest I once again be disappointed. Better to travel hopefully, no?

    Liked by 1 person

    • “Toute nation a le gouvernement qu’elle mérite.” One of my favorite quotes, roughly translated as “Every nation deserves it’s gov’t”. From French diplomat and philosopher Joseph de Maistre.
      Another oldie but goodie:
      “Les fausses opinions ressemblent à la fausse monnaie qui est frappée d’abord par de grands coupables et dépensée ensuite par d’honnêtes gens qui perpétuent le crime sans savoir ce qu’ils font.”
      False opinions are like false money, struck first of all by guilty men and thereafter circulated by honest people who perpetuate the crime without knowing what they are doing.

      A la tienne! 🙂


    • “…the nearest closest modern approach to the ideal is that practised by the Swiss”
      Swiss governance has been corrupted by harmful neoliberal policies over the years… ask me how i know. 😉
      A nanny state shifts more power to the gov’t, which means less freedom for the ppl. They use to have a fair and sustainable form of Democracy…. ahh, c’est la vie.


  2. Politics, huh? I might have guessed and should have known. For myself I stay as far from political involvement of any kind as I can get. I’d rather listen to a Moron missionary than a politician — although I know that both want my buck and power over me. At least the ubiquitous Preacher (regardless of which of many thousands of ‘Gods’ he or she is peddling) is up-front honest. In appearance, that is.

    After Election Day I can always say “Well—YOU voted for them; I didn’t!”. A vote for anyone is an endorsement of a hijacked system. Voters, in short, are dupes. Well intended (some of them) but dupes nonetheless:

    Why do people enter politics?

    Why do people vote for them?

    Liked by 1 person

      • LOL, you words and action speak volumes about our current system of gov’t. 😉
        Perhaps one day there’ll be a honorable statesman worthy of entrusting our vote and fight for the interests of the ppl…… bahhahahahaha. 🙂


        • No, I have to disagree. His words and actions speak volumes about him, about his lack of integrity, his level of education, and his inability to fathom what would happen to this … or any … nation if the people stopped caring and participating in government.


          • What Argus is implying: what if no one in the whole country voted? Hypothetically of course, will there still be a govt? Who will be the leader of our illusory Democracy? Will the peasants of society be better off or worse?
            Right now our 2 Party system of government is a sham. Neither party has the best interest of the ppl they purportedly represent. Of course corporations like Amazon and Google, many billion $$$ companies paid ZERO corporate income taxes under Trump’s tax plan. Did you pay zero taxes this year, or under any previous administration? How’s ur medical plan, did ur premiums and deductibles go up or down? What about mass shootings and the NRA correlation, did Congress do anything about extended background checks and banning automatic weapons? Apparently our votes don’t really count if we’re not “paying to play” to the tune of 100s of millions in campaign contributions by corporations, billionaires and the lobbyists in Washington who represent their interests. So who’s fighting for our rights and interests? Who’s fighting for our environmental rights to clean air and water? Biden? Warren? Harris? Are you sure about that?
            Point is whoever comes after Trump, we as a nation will still be in the same predicament. Voting only matters to the little ppl b/c it gives us an illusion of choice, it’s a national pacifier. In reality most if not all policy that matter is determined by the elite class of America. In actuality we live under an oligarchy disguised as a democratic republic.
            Don’t believe me? Then read about this current Princeton University Study:

            Sorry to burst ur bubble Jill.
            Will I be voting? Hell yeah just to see the orange one out, but I understand fully that nothing fundamental changes.
            Oil companies will keep on polluting, drug companies will keep selling their poisons, the war machine will keep rolling along etc etc and politicians will forever be beholden to their donors, while lying straight to our face.
            I wish I was wrong, but this cold hard reality is what it is. We need a strong viable 3rd party, nuff said.


  3. Jill, as an Independent, who has been a member of both parties (mostly GOP), I do not mind people being more conservative or liberal than me on various issues. What I do mind is people making things up to defend a position and I found Republicans abetted by Fox doing so at a much greater rate.

    We have a national security issue which is right in front of us. I sent the following to my Congressman and select Senstors. Please feel free to use and adapt.

    We are not asking enough why questions.
    – why is the president running a shadow diplomacy with Rudy Guiliani, who has not been vetted by the Senate?
    – why does the president ignore the seasoned diplomats and intelligence officials to chase conspiracy theories postulated by editorialists on Fox?
    – why are diligent, experienced, courageous and honorable public servants focusing on helping Ukraine gain better footing, when the president is so focused on his campaign?
    – why is there obstruction of documents and witnesses? The president cries foul, but he is blocking witnesses. He can’t have it both ways.

    As an independent and former Republican voter, I am deeply concerned by what has transpired in the White House with Ukraine. I am also concerned by an over zealous protection of someone who needs greater scrutiny, not less. I fully support the impeachment hearings. What witnesses are testifying under oath at great risk is very troubling.

    It is also troubling that Devin Nunes is leading the GOP efforts. He cited today a partisan report that GOP Senator Richard Burr asked Speaker Paul Ryan not to release as his Senate committee did not agree with its conclusions. Plus, we cannot forget that he had to step down as Chair of this committee as he informed the White House what they were investigating. So, I must confess I feel he lacks credibility and that is unfortunate.

    Help us Americans get to the bottom of this.

    Liked by 5 people

    • “The president cries foul, but he is blocking witnesses. He can’t have it both ways.” + “It is also troubling that Devin Nunes is leading the GOP efforts.”
      Apparently the Repugs led by Mr Nunes is circumventing rule of law, since they can’t get the Dems to drop the inquiry they’re going to start their own!! Can you believe Nunes has invoked an obscure House rule that Schiff reportedly overlooked, to call for a second, Republican-led “impeachment inquiry” hearing… one where Nunes and his allies would be calling the witnesses.

      In a letter, Nunes cited House Rule XI, Clause 2(j)(1) and demanded Schiff’s immediate response.

      If Schiff fails to call the hearing as requested, Nunes says it will be seen as “evidence of your denial of fundamental fairness and due process” by the American people.

      The letter can be read here —

      On September 24, 2019, Speaker Nancy Pelosi unilaterally announced that the House of Representatives would initiate an inquiry into impeaching President Donald J. Trump. Although Speaker Pelosi promised that Democrats would “treat the President with fairness,” you have repeatedly prevented Republicans from fully and fairly examining issues central to the Democrat’s “impeachment inquiry.” Therefore, pursuant to House Rule XI, Clause 2(j)(1), we, the undersigned Republican Members of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, exercise our right to convene a hearing with witnesses selected by the Minority to testify in the Democrats’ “impeachment inquiry.”

      House Rule XI, Clause 1(a)(1)(A) states that “[t]he Rules of the House are the rules of the committees and subcommittees so far as applicable.” House Rule XI, Clause 2(j)(1) provides that “the minority members of the committee shall be entitled, upon request to the chair by a majority of them before the completion of the hearing, to call witnesses selected by the minority to testify…” Notably, this rule was no displaced by H. Res. 660 and, therefore, under House Rule XI, Clause 1(a)(1)(A), it applies to the Democrats’ “impeachment inquiry.”

      As the Committee continues to conduct the Democrats’ partisan and one-sided “impeachment inquiry,” there are still important perspectives and serious issues that you have prevented the Committee from examining. We will inform you of the witnesses we intend to call once you have provided a hearing date and time of which we agree. Your failure to schedule this hearing shall constitute evidence of your denial of fundamental fairness and due process.

      It was signed by Nunes, as well as a large contingent of Republican reps.

      Seems like a diversionary tactic to me, we’ll see how Mr Schiff responds.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Keith!!! I plan to send a version of this to Mr. Davidson, and perhaps a few others tomorrow! You are so right … there are far too many unanswered questions. It’s time we get some answers, though I would settle for Trump simply resigning and being taken to prison. 😉


  4. Were I to suggest that Ms.Ingraham was in fact the Great Whore of Babylon before she took up with Fox so doubt there would be cries of foul. Yet Fox are prepared to allow this woman to attack a mans integrity without any proof at all. It’s very wrong.Here’s some advice for Ms. Ingraham and her cronies plus all those who evade the truth in the Republican party.
    How to act in front of gossip? This is the great advice of Socrates…..

    In Ancient Greece Socrates had a great reputation of wisdom. One day someone came to find the great philosopher, and he said:

    – do you know what I just heard about your friend?

    – one moment – Socrates replied – before he tells me, I would like to test you, the one of the three sieves.

    – the three sieves?

    – but yes, – continued socrates – before telling anything about others, it’s good to take the time to filter what you mean. I call it the test of the three sieves. The first sieve is the truth. Have you checked if what you tell me is true?

    – no… I just have what I’ve heard…

    – very good. So you don’t know if it’s the truth. We continue with the second sieve, that of kindness. What you want to tell me about my friend, is it good?

    – oh no! On the contrary.

    – so – continued socrates – you want to tell me bad things about him and you’re not even sure they’re true. Maybe you can still pass the test, keep being. The third sieve is that of utility. Did you think well if it’s useful what you came to talk about my friend?

    – useful? Actually, not.

    So, he said the wise: if what you want to tell me is not true, neither good, nor useful, then you better keep it just for you.

    So you already know. When someone comes to you with a gossip, the best thing will be to analyze how much it benefits You are in this life to learn things that add you and make you a better person in every aspect, you are not here to live listening or criticizing what others do.

    Liked by 5 people

    • What a wise man Socrates was! Gossip is the nature of Fox News … and others … and there are those, obviously, who thrive on it, who are gullible enough to believe every word they hear there. Would that everyone had the wisdom of Socrates … thank you for sharing this … it is very timely and astute!

      Liked by 1 person

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