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Month: November 2019 (page 1 of 2)

Phil Drucker’s Rant for 11-26-19: “The Beginning of the End”

On November 23, 2019, I gave a speech at the Democrats of the Desert’s monthly meeting to a crowd of more than 100 persons. The pre-arranged topic was “An Impeachment Update.” This for a week when Lieutenant Colonel Vindman, Gordon Sondland and Fiona Hill had all testified before the House of Representatives. A week of history, infamy, or both. Below is an after-the-fact close but not perfect recreation of the speech from my notes, for posterity, and doing double duty as this week’s Rant.

As I was walking up a few people asked me what I had written. I was, as is my custom, holding a clipboard. I reached the lectern, adjusted my glasses, checked my water supply, and…

“At the top, it says “I WANT NOTHING” “I WANT NOTHING” and “NO QUID PRO QUO” in big letters. Just so I don’t forget my talking points, you know. (NOTE: It didn’t say that but I thought it was funny.) Now, as I was saying, Good Afternoon. I’m so glad to be back at the Democrats of the Desert. One of my favorite groups for sure. Makes me proud to be a democrat, you all do.

Good afternoon. As some of you may already know, I am not a morning person but on the morning of Wednesday, November 20th, 2019, I decided to get up at the ungodly hour of 6:00am AM to watch the testimony of Gordon Sondland. Now let me make myself clear, I did not expect our ambassador to the EU to be a beacon or perhaps even bacon of truth, but seeing as he donated a million dollars to the Trump campaign in exchange for a position he is in no way qualified for, I figured he would know a thing or two about quid pro quo, and that he likely was not the type who would take the spear for Trump.

I was not disappointed. In fact, his testimony was far beyond my bleary-eyed expectations when Sondland, did in fact, throw everyone, and I mean everyone, including Trump, Pence, Pompeo, Mulvaney and so many more guilty as sin members of the Trump Crime Syndicate under the bus, leaving no doubt in any sane person’s mind, other than apparently Will Hurd, the good soldier congressman from Texas, that our 45th president would surely be and rightfully so, impeached for his role in the now historical, or at least infamous, coming to a text book near you soon “Ukraine” for imaginary dirt on the Biden scandal.

Since we are talking about politics, the word “surely” as used above means I’m 99.999% positive Trump will be impeached by the House, the articles of impeachment drafted and delivered to the Senate for the quasi-judicial removal trial Moscow Mitch McConnell will be constitutionally bound to conduct. At the end of his trial, our 45th President will either be acquitted or convicted of all or some of the articles charged, and if convicted, most likely removed from office. The very first president to suffer such a fate. Like I said, historical.

But know this, whether Trump is removed from office or not, he will forever bear the asterisk of impeachment by his name as both a shame to himself, if he has any, and a warning to future generations of what happens when you elect as your leader, a man with such low moral standards as to require an inquiry into whether his physical removal from the highest office of the land before the end of his term was warranted, lest he do yet more harm to our democratic way of life.

Having been pleased with my decision to try to catch the early EU Ambassador who got dragged into the wonderful world of Rudy G. worm, the next early morning brought yet more damning, and I might add chilling, testimony from Fiona Hill. If there was anything left to say, she said it, involving both members of the House and Senate to stop spreading soviet propaganda as if it were truthful, legitimate and factually accurate “news” for discussion on any station other than Faux or perhaps RT. Will they? That I do not know, for within 24-hours Comrade Trumpski was again at it tweeting the Putin line, accusing Ukraine and the Bidens of corruption. And of course, that he wanted nothing, nothing, no quid pro quo, and just for Zelenski to do the right thing.

My advice Mr. President? Is stop worrying about supposed corruption in Ukraine, and to start rooting out the corruption right here, at home, right under your nose. In fact, it is your nose. So why don’t you and your coked-up nose (NOTE: Got booed for this one. I guess some people just can’t handle the truth.) just resign already and for once in your life save us tax-payers the cost of paying for your incompetence. Haven’t you had enough free golf on our dime? I mean really…

Fortunately, one way or the other, you will be gone soon. Yet once you’re gone we will still have a big problem to fix. Our two-party system is broken. We currently have but one functioning party. One party wanting to govern, and one party made up of greedy, self-interested politicians whose only agenda is to gain and maintain power for nothing worthier than power’s own sake, and perhaps engage in a doomed attempt to keep white male privilege as part of our glorious “culture.” Sadly, our “representatives” are willing to go so far as to enlist the help of and invite our adversaries, the Russians, to meddle in our elections rather than work with their American counterparts across the aisle.

And then, as always, there is “we.” We the people, the people in this room and across America. What are we to do with half of a country of our fellow citizens who prefer belonging to a cult of personality? Being told what to do and say and not think for themselves. To not only drink the Kool-Aid, but like it.

Who should we fear most? Is it the monster with the savior complex? Or those who want, or need to be saved by that monster we should fear? I for one, do not fear the Pied Piper or the rats that follow him. I do fear the same cannot be said of your average Trump supporter.

Ask yourself, what do they want or think they need to be saved from? Not only what, but from who? Who?

Saved from those of a different race or color? From a different country? Of a different gender or sexual orientation? A different faith or religion?

Might we ask them, what are you afraid of? Of shoeless men, women and children asking for a better life through asylum at our border? So afraid you would put children in cages?

Are you, afraid of us? Of the democrats in this room? Of me?

Do you really believe the Russians need to save you from your fellow countrymen in this room? Better red than in this room, here with us? Talking about a better future of racial harmony, equality, kindness and caring for all in our great nation?


Or, can we come together? Perhaps we could begin at the point of the original Republican, now Ddemocratic icon, Abraham Lincoln. Strangely, this week is also the 155th Anniversary of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. If you don’t mind, I’d like to read this somewhat short but memorable moment in our nation’s history.

“Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.”

“But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate—we cannot consecrate—we cannot hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.”

“It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under g-d, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government…

”And I will end here.”

“…of the people,
by the people,
for the people,
shall not perish from the earth.” –Abraham Lincoln

Thank you.

Did you get your fill of Phil?

Instagram: Philip_Drucker

Dick Gregory on Ho Chi Minh

Ho Chi Minh was born in 1890, on May 19, and passed on September 2, 1969.
Dick Gregory wrote this remembrance for the Quicksilver Times. He first came to the nation’s attention as a “no-holds-barred” comedian mocking bigotry and racism. However, long before that, he served as a civil rights activist. As such, the Los Angeles Free Press often placed him in its pages. Afterwards he was a social critic, writer, conspiracy theorist, entrepreneur and, occasionally, even an actor.

Phil Drucker’s Rant for 11-19-19: “Can a Zionist Rely on Thist?”

Today, I begin with an oft-quoted passage from the Federalist Papers No. 51 generally attributed to James Madison but, possibly, written by Alexander Hamilton.
“If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.” –Federalist Papers No. 51


America. A socio/political experiment in the defeat of tyranny. With the Age of Enlightenment came the radical belief that when left to think and act for themselves without interference, mostly from Church and State, and certainly not the two working in tandem, persons would generally make the best decisions for, well, themselves. This is not to say the Founding Fathers were best described as anarchists, certainly not Godless or even libertarian. They were, for the most part, Deists who believed that the advanced science inherent in the obvious order of nature was the best indication of “intelligent design” and, hence, the existence of G-d. In short, someone smarter than us built the (As above) so-below part. But the question remained, how to best use it?

What was the best way to set up a society bent on individuals deciding for themselves? You separate those who would decide for you. From the lessons of Henry VIII and the Anglican Church, first, you separate Church and State, guaranteeing freedom of religious exercise and the establishment of an official, government sanctioned religion. Next and again based on the lessons of history, foremost the Roman Empire and English Parliament, you break the three core functions of government into three separate but equal branches. The Legislative, the Executive and the Judicial. Then, by implementing a system of checks and balances, you do your best to ensure no one person, aka a despot, tyrant, take your pick, may unilaterally designate, divine or decide that his will Trumps (coming soon to a dictionary near you) the will of the people to think and then act in their own best interests, as G-d so intended.

One of the grayer areas of constitutional separation, checks and balances, is American foreign policy. The Constitution itself grants, let’s call them duties and obligations that are related to foreign affairs to both the Executive and Legislative branches.

In addition to the War Powers (we usually (but not always) make war on foreigners) in Article II Section 2, the President is expressly enabled as follows:

“He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the Supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.”
It is also generally assumed through case law and practice that in matters of foreign policy the President “speaks as one voice” (One Voice Doctrine) for the people and thereby takes the initiative in matters related to external affairs.
Congress also has an explicit role in foreign affairs. In addition to its own War Powers, and the Senate’s right to Advise and Consent the President, Article I section 8 Clause 3 includes the right to regulate foreign commerce under the Commerce Clause:
“To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes.” (Emphasis added).

Recently, a great deal of attention has been placed upon foreign relations between the United States and Israel. For the record, the President acting unilaterally has, against literally decades of foreign policy to the contrary, reversed longstanding US policy on Israeli settlements. In fact, calling it “Obama’s Policy” although it was, in fact, Jimmy Carter’s administration that ruled in 1978, that’s 40 years ago for those who are counting, that ruled that civilian Israeli settlements were illegal under international law.

Now, it is true, Ronald Reagan, “changed” the word “illegal” to “illegitimate” in an action to downplay the international significance of the West Bank settlement, but it is there we have stood, till now. Don’t get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with a President supporting an ally, more or less, fervently than his predecessors, but officially acknowledging Jerusalem as Israel’s capital? A move certain to throw more fuel on the Israel-Palestinian two separate states fire? This is also on top of his unusually cozy relationship with fellow fascist Netanyahu. Is influencing Israel, not an enemy but a friendly nation’s elections to stay committed to the “right” a legitimate foreign interest? And yes, I will say it, is promoting the “Rapture” a legitimate function of state or religion?
Is this your voice? It’s not mine and I condemn it. Oh, and BTW, Jared, if you are listening, still working on that Middle East Peace Plan that nobody has ever seen? Khashoggi’s ghost must be turning in his dismembered grave.

Did you get your fill of Phil?
Instagram: Philip_Drucker

War Strangled by Long Hair – a Lesson for Those Who Want to Stop Climate Change

This was back in 1969. …when the mainstream headlines were all about winning a war of the very standard kind. And ours were on the flip side – organizing to grind it to a halt.

Likewise, today, our focus is still on what’s in the news, and still with a lens that settles on a better outcome.  Yes, there’s still a war, but it’s not all about people fighting people,  instead, it’s about people fighting for themselves.

Even so, there are some similarities. Specifically, the main objective is, once again, regime change – this time, tho, it’s from Corporate to considerate – all in a battle for Climate Change.  Climate Change, where the results of winning are wonderful, while the consequences of losing are terrible. In fact, very likely more terrible than they’ve ever been from the kind of wars we’ve, it seems, have always had on this planet.

The dead-body count of the Vietnam War,  from the forces of each side and the innocent caught in-between, before protests finally convinced politicians that they might gain ground but, literally, lose their constituency, was more than three and a half million. Yet that was only a fraction of the dead-body count of the War to End All Wars in which more than 60 million people lost their lives.

Certainly, the cemetery pictured has no room for that number; the one that would hold all the dead-bodies – head to foot, and side by side – from a Climate Change foisted on us (for profit!) before we could possibly adapt – would not be in any single state’s domain.  It might very well take up the entirety of our Country… or any other, or maybe even an-other comparable stretch of burnt out or barren land.  Yes, dire consequences, indeed… as, once more, we’ve a Silent Majority.

What did the LA Free Press do to keep this from happening?  Well, just ‘last week’ (11/7/1969) – actually 50 years and 1 week ago today –  we published our own Ron Cobb’s ‘Ecology Symbol’.   Right there, on our Front Page, it was put into ‘the Public Domain’ for the good of all (without an ‘ask’ for a single cent). Then Look Magazine incorporated it into a green and white field, and it was estimated that nearly a billion people saw the flag fly at parades and protests the world over! Here’s one of those:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_People%27s_Climate_March

Now here’s that lesson promised in our headline:  All those years ago, the Ecology Movement launched via the knowledge of – how the war (to stop the war) was won:  Look at that Moratorium Schedule – it’s jammed packed with constant and consistent activities. And those were only in California – events just like them were happening across the entire Country!

Participation and persistence mattered – and that’s where we  – the generation that was there – faltered… Never should we have given the bureaucracy even a bit of latitude once it had passed its promised delivery date; we should have proceeded as we had said we would… if only and solely because we didn’ have the time nor, likely, could we afford the further consequences of being crafted by lobbyists for their own self-serving interests.

But now,  in a return to yesteryear, there is an abundance of educated, socially-conscious, community-oriented minds that, with their unparalleled panoramic view, have recognized a pressing environmental danger, global warming.   Hopefully, this concern will re-open the door to the more basic and broader Ecology Movement of old rather than a replacement Movement arise constricted only to the single symptom (and then be fully re-branded as) Climate Change.

In other words, it is crucial for a solution to all the issues that the difference between ecological – with its cultural components – and environmental problems be understood so that the solutions rendered do not simply address the physical symptoms of a changing climate but, instead, include and address the societal change wrought by its restoration.

So, let’s step up, let’s clean-up, let’s step out, and -this time – let’s not stop until products are really recycling, fossil fuels are completely replaced with naturally self-sustaining energy sources, what grows is fully respected, and what can be shared is.  Let ‘persistence’ be our new watchword, the lesson from the past, let ‘persistence without compromise’ be our new standard – so that we not only meet our past goals, but exceed them.

As a final note,  my thoughts here stem from an article written a few years earlier by Ivy Bader, a visiting Correspondent.  Even today, it’s title – MONEY:  The Root of All Pollution –  and text – ring true.  And so, let’s balance the scales for those on the other side of this fight – those who reduce pollution – let’s encourage profitable projects, agreeing profits should be reasonable… and hoping that they are, eventually re-invested.  Surely it would good if people could earn a livelihood by helping to sustain us all.  Especially if, in the aggregate, they do more good than those who do us harm.


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