Is The President a Spy? By Hank Silverberg

It was hard to find a topic for this week’s edition. The government remains partially shut down and the Washington region and a good part of the country was covered in snow as the week began. The President was still obstinate about getting his border wall and lying about the justification for it, and a group of 30 Democrats were on a fact finding mission to sunny Puerto Rico that included tickets to a benefit performance of “Hamilton” in San Juan. 

I got no inspiration from the Twittersphere where people on both sides were still throwing around inaccurate statistics on illegal immigrants, including claims that the crime rate is up (it’s not, it’s actually down) and that “illegals” commit a disproportionate number of gruesome crimes in this country (totally false-see my previous blog below).

But one story did strike my fancy. I have published two political action…
National Emergency? What Emergency? By Hank Silverberg
The government is partially shut down, the stock market is on a roller coaster, and the President thinks the 1,954 mile border between the U.S. and Mexico is totally open and we are being invaded. That, he says, is a "National Emergency." He has even hinted he may bypass Congress and use that declaration to take money from the Department of Defense to build a border wall.   

With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at this so called "National Emergency." The overall economy may be slowing down a bit, and that could be a concern. But the stock market’s volatility may have been created by an unstable global market tied somewhat to a series of punitive tariffs imposed by the Trump Administration. The President’s incessant tweets criticizing the Federal Reserve Board over raising interest rates has increased investor's anxiety. ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­___________________________________________________________________…
We Need a Real Leader By Hank Silverberg
2018 is in the books. As I wrote last week, it was NOT a good year, though certainly not the worst either. Is there hope for 2019?  I’d  like to answer that with some humor, but I’m not Dave Barry and I lost my sense of humor about two hours into the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings.         
Many things went wrong this past year. Though the economy has been running at high speed with low unemployment, there’s a good chance it will run out of gas in 2019, or worse, crash into a tree because those driving it have been careless. Just this past month, the President created volatility in the Stock Market simply by attacking, in a TWEET, the Federal Reserve Board’s interest rate decisions. And for much of the year he wreaked havoc on the global economy by imposing tariffs on certain foreign goods, prompting retaliatory tariffs by both friend and foe. Those tariffs may spell real trouble for the world economy in 2019 if they continue.  
What we need more…
2018, The Year That Wasn’t  By Hank Silverberg

The year is rapidly coming to an end and it’s time to look back on 2018 with reflection. Really? Do we have to? 

As years go, 2018 was not a good one. It was not as bad as a hundred years ago in 1918, when a million men died in the last horrible months of World War One. It was not as bad as 50 years ago in 1968 when Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy were assassinated. But 2018 was still not a good year.   It was the year in which Donald Trump continued to dismantle much of the progress of the last four decades and ignored most of the growing problems of the 21st century. The best example is climate change, which is getting worse. Mr. Trump withdrew in 2017 from the Climate Change Accord signed by 174 countries and the European Union. He still calls it a hoax and belittles the science. But as I wrote last month, he continues to ignore the evidence as the impact gets worse.…
Distraction Faction 
By Hank Silverberg

Is your head spinning as you try to keep up with all the accusations against Donald Trump? Special Counsel Robert Mueller has been investigating for over a year and has not yet issued his final report,  but 33 people and three companies have been indicted and/or convicted from the investigation. And a second investigation by the U.S. Attorney in New York has nettedmore, including Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen.Yet, "Individual #1,"  as Mr. Trump is referred to in some
court papers, has yet to be charged with anything. Constitutional scholars keep saying that a sitting president can’t be indicted, so we are told the only way to  remove Mr. Trump from office before the 2020 election would be Impeachment. 
Impeachment proceedings have been used three times before in U.S. history. Andrew Johnson escaped removal in 1868 by Senators who were not happy with his Reconstruction programs and the firing of the Secretary of War. He was acquitte…
The December Blues
By Hank Silverberg

It’s a cold winter Sunday in December. It’s the 8th and final day of Chanukah. It’s snowing. A few miles from where I write this, thousands of people are crowded into the shopping malls. The music is festive, and with the economy in fair shape, if you believe the so-called experts, people are spending their hard- earned money on things they really don’t need.

The Sunday morning talking heads were all gabbing about the latest revelation in the Russia investigation which appears to be no revelation at all and @realDonaldTrump is tweeting nonsense again.
We are in the middle of the “holiday season” that seems to start these days with Halloween and end on January 2nd. For many people it is a joyous time of the year. They spend lots of time with family and friends, and worship in a variety of ways depending on their faith.
But as we approach December 25th, my blood pressure rises.  You see, I don’t care how many shopping days there are left until Christmas…
Patriotism and other things
By Hank Silverberg

Have you ever had your patriotism questioned?  It seems that is happening all over these days, and it is getting ridiculous.This meme has shown up on my Facebook news feed several times already and it makes me angry: _________________________________________________________________ “I’m proud to be an American” I bet no one passes this on because they are scared to be called a racist. _______________________________________
Here is an extensive answer to that post above, which I labeled "B-S." 
I am proud to be an American and live in a country where racial and ethnic diversity is a cornerstone of our strength. It’s a country where we can learn from each other, worship as we please, and speak our minds when we want to.
I am proud to be an American when racism is un-American. There is no connection between love of country and hate of other countryman or immigrants.  A proud American rejects that notion. Patriotism is not about waving the…