Abuse of power, obstruction – the charges against Trump explained – Reuters

(Reuters) – The U.S. Senate is expected to hold a trial this month to consider whether President Donald Trump should be removed from office after the House of Representatives in December approved two articles of impeachment that charge him with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.


Source: Abuse of power, obstruction – the charges against Trump explained – Reuters

Experts on Trump’s conduct: ‘Plainly an abuse of power, plainly impeachable’ | US news | The Guardian

Was what he did really so bad? And even if it was bad – was it truly impeachable?

As Democrats hit the gas on impeachment this week, Donald Trump exhorted Republicans to defend him on the substance of his actions in the Ukraine scandal, instead of sniping about the process.

“Rupublicans [sic],” Trump tweeted “go with Substance and close it out!”

Trump’s misconduct, critics say, includes using the power of the presidency to solicit foreign intervention in the 2020 US election, by trying to force Ukraine to help conduct a political hit on Joe Biden.

Trump denies all wrongdoing and most of his defenders do too. But there is a (slightly) subtler version of Trump defense that Republicans are trying out which says that while Trump’s conduct has not been irreproachable, neither has it been impeachable.

The argument, according to constitutional experts and historians of impeachment, is not a strong one. In fact, Trump’s conduct, according to analysts interviewed by the Guardian, hews more closely than any previous conduct by any other president to what scholars conceive as a concrete example of impeachable behavior.

Frank O Bowman III, author of High Crimes and Misdemeanors: A History of Impeachment for the Age of Trump and a professor at the University of Missouri school of law, said that Trump’s having extorted actions with no legitimate US national purpose from a foreign country that is “literally at risk of losing its political and territorial independence” without US support was impeachable.

“It’s plainly an abuse of power, and it’s plainly impeachable,” Bowman said.

“I think these are quite clearly, precisely the type of high crimes and misdemeanors that the founders not only feared but actually discussed at the constitutional convention,” said Jeffrey A Engel, co-author of Impeachment: An American History and director of the center for presidential history at Southern Methodist University.

“The high crime is the trade – give me dirt on Joe Biden and his son, and I’ll give you in return military aid and help with your economy – I think that is certainly impeachable,” said Corey Brettschneider, author of The Oath and the Office: A Guide to the Constitution for Future Presidents and a professor of constitutional law at Brown University.

Many are finding defending Trump difficult at the moment. Republican lawmakers spent Thursday fleeing reporters trying to ask the question, “Do you think it’s OK for the president to pressure foreign governments to interfere in our elections?”. One lawmaker even headbutted a camera rather than reply.

The reason Trump’s alleged conduct is plainly impeachable, historians say, has to do with US impeachment precedent and with what the authors of the US constitution meant when they provisioned impeachment for “high crimes and misdemeanors”.

“If we look at history both British and American – and it’s important to look at British history, because our Framers were of course rebel Englishmen and they adopted the phrase ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ in full recognition of the fact that that was a parliamentary term of art, and that therefore they were adopting to some degree, by reference, previous usages of that term – all of that leads to really the inescapable conclusion that one of the grounds for impeachment has always been abuse of power,” said Bowman.


Source: Experts on Trump’s conduct: ‘Plainly an abuse of power, plainly impeachable’ | US news | The Guardian

I had a visit from my benefits assessor – and now I fear the state more than poverty

Power is a very important feeling and skill and needs to be used with discretion and in some instances it may be used without the persons knowledge. For just being employed by certain organisations casts a feeling of power onto others.

I know of people who are just scared of entering the Town Hall, the base of power of people in local government.

So, if a place creates a feeling of power in people, how much more can be assumed coming from people who work there.

What is genuinely forgotton by some who work in these places of power and those who come into contact with people from these place, is that the people there are Servants of the Public, so in fact every people within that community are, effefctively, the employers of the people in these places.

How many of you have come across some council officiers, as an example, who state to you that they work for the council in such as a maaner that it is uttered as a threat of ‘do not mess with me, because I have the Council behind me’. This is a massive abuse of this assumption of power.

But, in some respects, we may be right to fear, for, and has been proved, especially with DWP assessors that they have, in fact, appeared to blatantly lie on assessment forms.

Should this not be a criminal actions, for it is for claimants making false statements, so then, it should be for Officers filling in these forms.

Politics – Trump Staff Demanded Removal Of Warship Bearing John McCain’s Name Before Japan Visit |JONATHAN TURLEY

The White House reportedly told the Defense Department that it needed to send away the the USS John McCain so that it was not around when President Donald Trump visited Japan. Named after Trump’s Republican critic, the ship had to be “out of sight” by the time Trump arrived for a visit to the Yokosuka base. Trump has denied knowing about the order, but did not say that he would find out who issued the order and fire them. The idea of White House staff dictating the movement of warships is extremely serious and the Navy should have refused. These warships have missions and are not props. Moreover, the people serving on these ships are not some collective pariah due to petty politics.

The McCain is an Arliegh Burke-class destroyer and part of the Destroyer Squadron 15 of the Seventh Fleet anchored at Yokosuka Naval Base.

I have actually long opposed the naming of ships (or other public properties) for politicians. I would love to see a ban on such practices. It is a way for agencies to curry favor and budget increases by appealing to the inexhaustible ego of politicians.


Source:  Politics –Trump Staff Demanded Removal Of Warship Bearing John McCain’s Name Before Japan Visist | JONATHAN TURLEY

Neil was forced to spend 6 hours applying for Universal Credit just after having surgery for brain cancer

Politics and Insights

Neil MacVicar is in remission from a brain tumour (Photo: Fabio De Paola)

Neil MacVicar is now in remission from a brain tumour (Photo: Fabio De Paola) 

Neil MacVicar was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 25 in December 2016. Doctors found a tumour the “size of a plum” on his brain.

Just twelve days after neurosurgery to remove the growth, when he should have been recovering and preparing for gruelling radiotherapy, Neil was forced to go to the Jobcentre to sign on for Universal Credit.

The application can be difficult for claimants in good health. For a cancer patient  struggling with exhaustion and confusion from an operation, it was nearly impossible. It took Neil six gruelling hours in total to complete his application.

He was staying with his family in Inverness at the time, and Neil cannot understand why, given his circumstances, he was made to endure that and why the Jobcentre could not have obtained the information from his…

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Brexit News: France could BLOCK Calais to make Brexit HELL for Britain – SHOCK CLAIM | World | News | Express.co.uk

The UK Cabinet has expressed concern that if the port is blocked, it would cause mayhem for cross-Channel trade and potentially create massive damage to the UK’s economy.

According to the Department for Exiting the European Union (DExEU), the Dover-Calais crossing is a major weak point for the UK as it is the only roll-on, roll-off ferry hub.

Due to Calais being on French soil, it gives France the ability to cause major delays for lorry drivers that are headed to the UK, especially if they are transporting factory parts for time sensitive supply chains.

French customs officials also have the ability to bring British food exports to France to a grinding halt.


Source: Brexit News: France could BLOCK Calais to make Brexit HELL for Britain – SHOCK CLAIM | World | News | Express.co.uk

Psychologist warns Trump’s mental state is rapidly deteriorating — and he may be ‘on the boundary of psychosis and reality’ : Raw Story

Based on Donald Trump’s public behavior, some of America and the world’s leading psychologists, psychiatrists and other clinicians have concluded that the president of the United States is mentally unwell. Trump appears, in their opinion, to suffer from malignant narcissism. He is also a compulsive liar who lacks empathy for his fellow human beings and shows no remorse for his bad behavior. Most importantly, Trump’s personality defects amplify his authoritarian values, beliefs and behavior. The results of this could be catastrophic.

This article was originally published at Salon

This week, Donald Trump met with Kim Jong Un in Singapore, the first time an American president and a North Korean leader had ever met in person. This encounter quite literally had the potential to be explosive. Trump has alternated between threatening Kim with nuclear annihilation and praising him and other totalitarian leaders for their “strength.” Moreover, in many ways Kim Jong Un is everything Trump would like to be — a despot with no restraints on his personal and political power. Kim is also free to dispense with his enemies as he sees fit. He is literally the law in his nation and leads a society where he is worshiped as a god: North Korea is the ultimate cult of personality.

For the moment, disaster has been averted. At the Singapore summit, Trump and Kim engaged in an alpha-male bromance with one another. At this point, it appears that North Korea’s leader outmaneuvered Trump and the United States. Kim left Singapore with more international prestige and seemingly extracted important concessions. Donald Trump’s ego was stroked while the security of the United States and its allies in the region was weakened. Given Trump’s impulsive behavior, cultivated ignorance and hostility towards serious experts in diplomacy, East Asia and North Korea in particular, war may merely have been postponed for a later date, one that depends on the mercurial whims of Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un.


Source: Psychologist warns Trump’s mental state is rapidly deteriorating — and he may be ‘on the boundary of psychosis and reality’ : Raw Story

The ‘anti-imperialism’ of idiots

Syria is but one of many conflicts around the world, but some gain publicity while others do not to the extent of Syria, such as Myanmar and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and many more.

Why do these atrocities occur and why can we not all live in peace?

Is it the grab for power and the fear of losing it by certain people that creates all this. Some overthrow their Government due to the atrocities that have been occurring only then to create more and sometimes similar atrocities themselves, could this be a human trait?

Leila's blog

DavOd8fWkAA2loL Cartoon criticizing selective outrage which only applies to chemical attacks, by Yaser

Once more the western ‘anti-war’ movement has awoken to mobilise around Syria. This is the third time since 2011. The first was when Obama contemplated striking the Syrian regime’s military capability (but didn’t) following chemical attacks on the Ghouta in 2013, considered a ‘red line’. The second time was when Donald Trump ordered a strike which hit an empty regime military base in response to chemical attacks on Khan Sheikhoun in 2017. And today, as the US, UK and France take limited military action (targeted strikes on regime military assets and chemical weapons facilities) following a chemical weapons attack in Douma which killed at least 34 people, including many children who were sheltering in basements from bombing.

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