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Paul A Duginski
Paul A Duginski
Paul Duginski is a political cartoonist and veteran newspaper staff artist. He enjoys reading history, literature and going bodyboarding whenever he has time.


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Posted in Politics / Elections / National

Storm Flags

Nov. 15, 2017 1:59 am
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Our 71-year-old so-called president, Donald Trump, was treated to flattering, ego-massaging pomp and circumstance on his lengthy Asia trip, and he lapped it up like a dog. But he returns to Washington mostly empty-handed.

In his absence, his party — the GOP is predominantly the party of Trump — continues to be buffeted by powerful political storms.

His party still hasn’t been able to accomplish anything to speak of legislatively, and his oft-repeated promise to “repeal and replace” Obamacare on his first day in office has yet to be kept.

Voters responded to efforts by the Republicans to take away their healthcare by administering a stunning beatdown to GOP candidates in Virginia and New Jersey.

The Trump-Russia conspiracy scandals continue to percolate, with embarrassing and jaw-dropping revelations, sometimes on almost an hourly basis. Trump insists that he believed Putin when the former KGB colonel told him that he didn’t interfere in the 2016 election. Which is to say Trump believes his Kremlin bro rather than our own U.S. intelligence agencies.

Moreover, with the U.S. having just marked Veteran’s Day, he’s saying that all the young American lives sacrificed in the global fight against the kind of tyranny we see in Putin’s Russia simply don’t matter. Trump likes and sides with a tyrant, which is the definition of being un-American, and Putin wins without firing a shot. He basically has Trump eating out of his hand.

There’s a schism developing in the Republican Party, as evidenced by patriots such as Sens. John McCain, Bob Corker and Jeff Flake choosing their country over party. Now if only their patriotism could be infectious and fill Washington.

As a result of all this, the president’s poll numbers are in the cellar, but they should be at zero. It’s surprising that anyone still supports Trump, but his base doesn’t seem to care what he says or does. We’re seeing the apotheosis of ignorance and tribalism in that small segment of the American populace that still supports our buffoon-in-chief.

They talk about making America great again, but they’ll never accomplish that by being un-American.

We also have the nauseating scandals surrounding Judge Roy Moore, which are a reflection and magnification of the sentiments expressed by Trump in the infamous Access Hollywood tape. Basically, that is that if you are a celebrity or someone powerful, such as a district attorney, a movie mogul or a famous actor, you can take by force whatever you want from people who are less powerful. And women are almost always less powerful.

Really, it’s practically like a CT scan of the heart of at least some aspects of American capitalism, aspects that don’t accede to the rule of law. If you want something, you simply take it.

For his part, Moore whines that he’s being persecuted — his brother claims “like Jesus” — and denies the charges of being a child molester.

I think he’s got it wrong. Jesus said, “Suffer the little children to come to me.” Jesus didn’t say, “Let the little children come to me and I’ll cause them years of untold suffering.”

But Moore wouldn’t be the first scoundrel to invoke scripture for his own hypocritical motives. As we’ve seen with the so-called “tea party,” the alt-right, the white supremacists and all the rest of the dangerous gutter ideologies of hate, facts for these people don’t trump — so to speak — their un-Christian hatred and appetite for dominance and even violence against Democrats, minorities, “elites” (anyone who tests positive for IQ), women, Muslims, LBGTQ people or any form of “other.”

These are weird, terrible times. Some will cite our unprecedented polarization, washing their hands in despair and doing nothing. Others, in the knowledge that the storms have yet to pass, will fight and resist with their last breath. As has been said, all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good people do nothing.

Film maker Michael Moore has said, “We have to form an army of citizens and come at [Trump] like a swarm of bees. I suggested a few months ago that we have an army of satire, because I think the way to bring him down is satire.”

That’s my weapon of choice, and you can bet I will continue to wield my pen and brush against Trumpism as long as I am able to. It’s not a choice; it’s my patriotic duty.

Some day, when Steve Bannon and his alt-right neo-Nazis are chased back under the rocks from whence they came; some day, when the feculence of Trump and Trumpism are hosed permanently off the face of America and into the dustbin of history, I will be able to hold my head high and say that I did my part for my own sake and the sake of my children.

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