Future

Impeachment Is Both the Cause and the Effect of a Too-Powerful Presidency

If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished?

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By focusing all of its efforts on impeachment during a presidential campaign, Congress has given away the game: Its members are little more than pawns in a winner-take-all battle for the presidency and its vast and ever-growing powers. Worse, they seem to prefer it that way.

Impeachment is messy, like digging out the pit from an overripe peach. The formal process is difficult for Americans to comprehend. The criteria are blurry and debatable. It requires nearly everyone involved to perform some amount of hypocritical partisan contortionism. It's the bluntest of instruments in politics, and that's really saying something.

Because of this confusingly contingent nature of impeachment, many in Congress are currently extremely busy practicing "strategic silence." They're waiting to see whether the 58 percent of Americans who told Washington Post/Schar pollsters in early October that they support the impeachment inquiry will stick to their guns (and whether the number of likely Republican voters in their midst will grow larger).

But it is increasingly clear that, especially for party leadership in Congress, the game is worth the candle. The game is worth a whole candelabra, in fact. A chandelier, even.

Impeachments are becoming more frequent, with only one—of Andrew Johnson in 1868—in the first couple centuries of U.S. history and three (yes, we're counting Nixon) in the last 50 years. It's not a coincidence that the latter period has also seen unprecedented growth in the powers of the president and in the number of dollars and lives at his disposal.

Even the substance of the narrow matter at hand in 2019 demonstrates this dynamic. At issue in the impeachment inquiry—at least at press time, since these things have a tendency to develop quickly—is the implication of a quid pro quo offered to a foreign leader in a phone call with Donald Trump. Depending on your reading of the evidence, the president may or may not have intentionally given the impression that the price of U.S. military aid to Ukraine was some kind of dirt on a political rival, Joe Biden.

There are two ways to prevent this kind of alleged self-interested self-dealing from the White House. One option would be to elect a person of high moral character who also has a well-developed understanding of the rules and strictures that govern the office—someone who is inclined to respect those rules in letter and spirit as well as to honor the guidelines for transparency that allow other government officials and the press to verify the upright and noble exercise of his vast authority. We would then have to locate, nominate, and elect such a person every four to eight years unto eternity. We would have to trust not only that each president embodies all of these traits but also that he has surrounded himself with similarly virtuous characters. And we would have to assume that coming into possession of such powers is not itself corrupting. Good luck!

Another option would be to limit the power of the presidency. This approach is also difficult, but it can be done. In today's case, the problem could have been avoided by the simple expedient of making it impossible for any president to control the disbursement of millions of dollars to foreign leaders at his own discretion, and by making that restriction on his authority so clear that favor seekers could have no plausible misunderstanding about who holds the purse strings.

There are matters that are genuinely the business of the executive, the all-important Supreme Court appointments among them. But it is not the case that, as Trump has asserted, "I have an Article II where I have the right to do whatever I want as president."

In pursuing impeachment to the exclusion of all else, Congress has muddled the message about its own prerogatives and complicated its defense of them, all while dramatically reducing the time and energy available to actually exercise those prerogatives in a responsible manner.

Impeachment, at least as it is currently being practiced, does not restrict the vast powers of the president—it's merely an attempt to wrest those powers from a particular man.

"As I learn more and more each day, I am coming to the conclusion that what is taking place is not an impeachment, it is a COUP, intended to take away the Power of the People, their VOTE, their Freedoms, their Second Amendment, Religion, Military, Border Wall, and their God-given rights as a Citizen of The United States of America!"

This was Trump's analysis of those early October impeachment inquiry polls. And he wasn't the only one floating the idea that impeachment proceedings would be somehow contrary to the democratic spirit. As Sen. Ted Cruz (R–Texas) told MSNBC's Chris Hayes in October, "The fact that he shouldn't have gone down that road is a long way from saying, 'Therefore, he should be impeached and forcibly removed from office after the American people have voted in a presidential election.'"

But what is in fact contrary to the democratic spirit is the monarchical idea that the president alone is the embodiment of the power of the people, the lone defender of our rights. That's a big job. And the Founders, in their great and unmatched wisdom, saw fit to distribute it across a rather large cast of characters. They gave the House the impeachment power in order to make coups unnecessary. The existence of elections cannot logically make impeachments a violation of the democratic process. Every president who has been impeached was, after all, voted into office first.

Trump could very well be re-elected post-impeachment. And any attempt by Congress at that point to prevent him from being sworn in a second time would indeed be undemocratic, unconstitutional, and unconscionable—an actual coup.

Rather than squabble over the presidency, Congress can and should reassert its considerable constitutional powers. It could start by reclaiming the sole right to declare war and rediscovering its lawmaking authority, the latter of which it has ceded to executive branch bureaucrats out of laziness, cowardice, and general ineptitude in the face of genuinely difficult work. But there's little evidence the legislative branch has any intention of doing that.

If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished? His presidential pen, phone, and Twitter account will still retain the same outsized power as his predecessors'. He will be just as tempted to abuse that power and just as alone in his burden. And if, on the first Tuesday of November, President Biden emerges victorious (or President Warren, or President Sanders, or even President Amash), we will still have the same destructive imbalance between the branches, the same motivation to go all-in on the battle for the presidency, and the same incentives to begin calling for  impeachment proceedings on the Wednesday morning after each Election Day, before the new president even takes office.

Impeachment is the hair of the dog after an all-night executive power bender. Sure, a Bloody Mary might make you feel better for a little while. But in the long run, it might be better to get off the sauce entirely.

NEXT: Trump Administration Loses a Sanctuary City Case - Yet Again

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  1. “Trump could very well be re-elected post-impeachment. And any attempt by Congress at that point to prevent him from being sworn in a second time would indeed be undemocratic, unconstitutional, and unconscionable—an actual coup.”

    If the Senate has 2/3 to convict, it could well have a majority to prohibit Trump from holding federal office again. That’s the maximum constitutional punishment for impeachment, and it’s been invoked before (for certain misbehaving judges).

    But, yes, it *would* be a coup for the Deep State to control the impeachment process and use this power to veto the election of Presidents it doesn’t like.

    1. The only people in a position to have knowledge of corruption by govt officials would generally be the people who are working in that govt. This “deep state” trope is just lazy thinking. Trump is always the common denominator. His own officials are testifying. His own officials appointed a special prosecutor to examine his campaign and the Russians. Trump is a crook. That’s the problem. It’s just so simple.

      1. “It’s just so simple.”

        To paraphrase H. L. Mencken, every problem has a solution which is simple, obvious…and wrong.

        “This “deep state” trope is just lazy thinking.”

        The dawn is breaking; time to turn off the gaslight.

        James B. Stewart, columnist for the New York Times, actually celebrates the Deep State as heroes – but of course in order to do this he’d have to admit the Deep state exists:

        https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/dan-gainor-even-ny-times-columnist-admits-theres-a-deep-state-but-he-says-members-are-the-good-guys

        1. Were two Giuliani associates just arrested at an airport trying to leave the country with one way tickets?

          1. Ghouliani is pathetic and was chosen for political reasons – hopefully he’ll be dropped for the same reasons and replaced by a *good* lawyer.

            1. You didn’t answer the question. Here’s another one. Why were Giuliani’s associates arrested?

              1. Why is Trump’s other lawyer in federal prison? Why is Trump’s campaign manager in federal prison? Why is Trump’s National Security Adviser awaiting sentencing in a federal court?

                1. Are we playing count the arrests on each side? Did you miss the biggest election fine in history under obama? Did you just see the arrest of a saudi Arabia national for Obama’s inauguration? Yes, let’s play this game.

                2. Either they’re criminals or the prosecutor offered them plea-bargains they couldn’t refuse.

                  Bill Clinton escaped conviction even though many of his people went to prison.

                  So did Reagan.

                  I forget if Grant’s crooked cronies went to prison, but they certainly should have. Grant himself wasn’t impeached.

                  Thus I’m not sure I see your point.

                  1. So you don’t know the specifics just that “they’re criminals”.

                    You were asked why Giuliani’s associates were arrested and you still have not answered the question.

                    1. “So you don’t know the specifics just that “they’re criminals”.”

                      No, I said “Either they’re criminals or the prosecutor offered them plea-bargains they couldn’t refuse.”

                    2. When choosing between two rival gangs of thieves (Dems and Reps), I prefer the gang that *doesn’t* kill babies.

                  2. What were Giuliani’s associates up to that got them arrested?

                    1. I have no idea, why don’t you tell me – and tell me what Clinton’s various cronies were convicted of doing?

                    2. These two associates are accused of funneling foreign money to Republican politicians and using that money to lobby these politicians. One of those politicians was a Republican Congressman from Texas. He was given money and told to help get an American Ambassador to Ukraine fired.

                    3. It seems that Ghouliani has a propensity for having dubious associates – even before he got a job with Trump:

                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Kerik

                      He’s an ally of the Democrats where it really counts – killing unborn babies. He was the pro-choice mayor of the country’s abortion capital. If he hadn’t put an “R” after his name he’d be the bestest of buddies with the Dems.

                    4. Ok Eddie. I see.

                    5. I see no reason to let the Democrats punish the country (including unborn children) to expiate Trump’s mistake in his choice of lawyers.

                    6. Cohen committed a crime at the direction of Trump. I’ll think we’ll find that Giuliani did as well. We shall see.

                    7. Yes, Eddie has already lost.

                      Investigating Biden is a Good idea. Especially after that bit of speech about his son.

                    8. I like how you skipped right over my examples dumbass pod. Do I need to go into funding from china next?

                3. “Why is Trump’s other lawyer in federal prison? Why is Trump’s campaign manager in federal prison? Why is Trump’s National Security Adviser awaiting sentencing in a federal court?”

                  Why is this not terrifying you as a libertarian? Most of the charges are obscure and even spurious. Even for douches like Michael Cohen.
                  How come you think this type of selective political lawfare is legitimate? Hillary and Obama’s managers and lawyers have publicly boasted of worse and remain untouched. If this isn’t part of an elite coup attempt, why is that?

          2. “Were two Giuliani associates just arrested at an airport trying to leave the country with one way tickets?”

            Which tells you they are not the sharpest crayons in the box. One way tickets out of the country.

            “ Hey Bob! Look what just popped up on the TSA screen. Call down to LaGuardia and tell them to hang on to these guys”

      2. The former acting CIA director :

        “JOHN MCLAUGHLIN: Thank god for the Deep State. Everyone here has seen this progression of diplomats and intelligence officers and White House people trooping up to Capitol Hill right now and these are people doing their duty and responding to a higher call. With all of the people who knew what was going on here, it took an intelligence officer to step forward and say something about it, which was the trigger that unleashed everything else.”

        You, like McLaughlin attribute a sanctimonious drive of non elected officials. This is an idiotic assertion without evidence. I can point to solely the FISA abuse that includes 2 audits by the judiciary showing non elected members of government using the database at whim for personal reasons.

        Pod is exactly the type of person who is known as a useful idiot, believing in the sanctity of the state. You are exactly the type.of follower dictators and authoritarians dream of.

      3. “Deep State” is just the newest name for the shadowy cabal of faceless enemies that must exist in order for the conspiracy theorists’ crazy ideas to be true. The shadowy cabal holds the conspiracy together. In another context and in another time the “Deep State” would be called “Jewish bankers” or “Bilderbergers” or “Freemasons”.

        1. Stewart goes down the memory hole, despite praising the Deep State to the skies? How can he do that if the Deep State doesn’t exist?

          If they’re a patriotic cell of Trump-resisters, then you can’t simultaneously claim they don’t exist.

          1. The “Deep State” is a vague term. I am totally willing to believe that there are some unelected bureaucrats who have arrogated too much power to themselves. But the ones at the top – the ones with the real power- are all political appointees. If Trump’s own picks are backstabbing him then that’s not really “deep state” .

            1. That’s not who people mean whem they say deep state though. This has been dsicussed repeatedly. It is the people, unelected and unaapointed lifetime apparatchiks, who do not get replaced and forward their own ideas as policy while hamstringing anyone who opposes them, especially if that opposition comes from the electorate.

              I think you should probably familiarize yourself with a term before using it in the future.

              1. “ I think you should probably familiarize yourself with a term before using it in the future.”

                That’s not how Little Jeffy rolls.

                Whether it’s definitions he doesn’t like, or what other people say, he’ll change what he likes to fit his own argument.

                1. He once insisted that I used a word, and that it was a quote, then when I proved it wasn’t, he insisted that it was my fault, and that what I said amounted to the same thing so the usage was appropriate.

                  He literally made up a quote, blamed me for not being clear when the quote was proven a lie, and then justified using it anyway.

                  100% true story.

                  1. Was that when I called him Jeffy Schiff? Cuz I called him Jeffy Schiff once for doing that.

                  2. That’s not even true. You don’t know what you are talking about. God you are utterly shameless. The saddest part is that you have repeated these lies so often that you’ve actually gotten people to believe them.

                    1. I think it is odd true. Even and odd are the only choices.

              2. Mandarins.

                As they say, the bureaucrats run a country.

              3. It is the people, unelected and unaapointed lifetime apparatchiks, who do not get replaced and forward their own ideas as policy while hamstringing anyone who opposes them, especially if that opposition comes from the electorate.

                Okay so then that meaning of the term “deep state” is just the shadowy conspiracy nonsense that I mentioned. The “unelected and unappointed apparachtiks” – who are these people? Name names. What is the power that they wield? How have they used that power improperly? Don’t hide behind this vague term “deep state”, identify who the specific individual is. If you can’t do that, then yeah, it’s no different than blaming it on some shadowy conspiracy nonsense.

                1. Comey
                  Ohr
                  McCabe
                  Brennan
                  Clapper
                  Vindman
                  Taylor
                  Ciarmarella
                  Hill

                  Just off the top of my head

              4. When they say the “Deep State” they mean the entrenched, unionized civil service who stay around forever, doing what they want and dragging their feet on things elected officials and their appointees want but that they oppose. One author referred to them as the “We bees”, as in “We be here when you came in , and we be here when you’re long gone.”

        2. Always the ignorant one Jeffrey. I literally quoted a former acting CIA director praising the deep state. NYT just had an article praising the deep state. The fact that you dont understand the fact that an unelected bureaucracy thinks themselves above elected politics. Go google how many times Vindland used the term interagency agreement as proof Trump was wrong. He literally stated on his written statement Trump had gone against the wishes of established agencies. You really are fucking ignorant.

          1. Secretly asking foreign govts to create investigations of political opponents is a crime.

            1. Secretly asking foreign govts to create investigations of political opponents is a crime.

              Huh. Care to cite the law?

              1. Don’t have the exact regulation at hand, but according to the Federal Election Commission it is basically demanding a non-monetary campaign contribution. Specifically, free investigation of one’s campaign opponent.

                It is also arguably a “gift” from the foreign government, making it a violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution.

                1. Again mike… the DoJ reviewed that complaint. They dismissed it like they have for 2 centuries. No court had ever held information as being a thing of value in regards to elections. Your preferred interpretation would require the criminalization of people offering public support of a preferred candidate.

                  1. William Barr´s Justice Department is engaged in pure partisan hackery.

                    1. Just like Holder’s? Just like Loretta Lynch’s?Just like Bobby Kennedy’s?

            2. Secretly asking foreign govts to stop investigations of political crimes is a crime. Bragging about it is stupidity.

              “Say Joe, was that you I heard…”

          2. There is your dishonest narrative pushing again.

            McLaughlin was asked a question about the so-called “deep state” and his response was a tongue in cheek answer to that question.

            https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/11/01/former_acting_cia_director_john_mclaughlin_on_impeachment_thank_god_for_the_deep_state.html

            I think he has an overinflated opinion of his own former agency but i don’t think that one comment itself proves the exisyence of some shadowy cabal of resistors ESPECIALLY as Republicans tend to use the term, as some catch-all excuse to wave away Trump’s failures and general incompetence.

            1. “There is your dishonest narrative pushing”

              OK let’s look.

              “his response was a tongue in cheek”

              Based on what he said, that looks like your dishonest narrative pushing.

              Weird how you call people out then do it. Oh no it isn’t, it’s you.

              1. That’s from the article.
                And Tulpa, why are you impersonating Buttplug?

                1. “That’s from the article.”

                  And? That doesn’t make it you pushing a dishonest narrative? Just because you got it ejaculated on your face by someone else?

                  1. Why are you impersonating another commenter, Tulpa?

                    1. Read the thread retard.

                  2. So why don’t you show us all how you think the article I cited is being dishonest.

                    1. I did retard.

                    2. No you didn’t. You just claimed I was pushing a dishonest narrative while never trying to show why you thought it was dishonest. As usual you just derail and sidetrack the conversation.

                  3. And we see once again how Tulpa derails the conversation to make it all about me, and him, and not about the original subject of the conversation which is the supposed “deep state”.

                    Why it’s almost as if Tulpa deliberately attempts to frustrate and inhibit any peaceful conversation that others might be having.

                    1. Lose you shit and triple post more because you know you lost retard.

                    2. You are such an ass. Please find something better to do.

      4. “…Trump is a crook. That’s the problem. It’s just so simple.”

        You’re a liar and a TDS victim; it is simple.

    2. Luckily, Trump will remain in office and be reelected by an even larger margin than 2016.

      These next 5 years with Trump as President are going to be rough for the cry babies on the Left.

      1. Even funnier is that this Impeachment by the House is the only shot they get. Once the US Senate does not remove Trump from office, the Democrats wont be politically able to do another impeachment because the Americans public wont tolerate it at all.

        This is even if a miracle happens and the Democrats control both house of Congress. Haha. If the Party of slavery had only waited to impeach Trump during his second term, they could have a shot of removing him from office.

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    4. Correct. (And I made the same mistake myself on another forum.) Conviction after impeachment can, under the Constitution, include preventing the person convicted from holding public office again.

  2. Impeachment is messy, like digging out the pit from an overripe peach.

    Ok, I really liked the analogy. Quite colorful and apt. Well done.

    I think the central thesis is also correct: The Executive branch has become too powerful, in large part because the Legislative branch ceded their authority through laziness, incompetence.

    But what would be a good ‘libertarian’ implementation plan? That is the question. I posit that this is a case where rescinding things would be a good start. For example, the 2001 AUMF is a good place to start. That has to be trashed, and re-done properly. It was passed in the moment of national hysteria. It is now 18 years later. I think it is time to review.

    Perhaps another ‘liberatarian’ solution is to incentivize the federal bureaucracy is to not spend all allocated monies. If we are serious about cutting spending, why not incentivize the people closest to the actual spending to find ways to reduce it (and reward them for it). I foresee some bureaucratic mischief with that, though.

    Mostly, I would like to see our leaders embrace incrementalism as a civic virtue. My observation is when we have these grand plans, like ‘War on Drugs’, ‘Obamacare’, ‘War on terror’ – inevitably, all kinds of unintended shit just happens and fucks it all up. And we lose more of our individual liberty each time. So I guess I would suggest that adopting an incremental attitude instead of grand sweeping legislation would help here also.

    Last….the question of personal responsibility. Look, all of this is fine, but with an apathetic electorate, nothing will change. I think Shaw said something to the effect of, “Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.” So true.

    1. Worst analogy evah!

      1. And I’m a guy who knows analogies, I mean, this is just the worst analogy in the history of analogies. When I’m in office we’re gonna have new ones, a big, beautiful, strong analogy, and Reason is going to pay for it.

    2. You think it’s laziness and/or incompetence that’s caused Congress to cede more effective power to adminstrations? No, I think it’s quite calculated and possibly smart. They’re looking at how much credit they can take without taking blame. Usually those go hand in hand, but if there’s even the slightest edge to be gained by deflecting responsibility, legislators will go there. Like somehow convincing enough voters on a particular issue that if it goes the way they want, it’s because of Congressmen (and senators), but if it doesn’t, it’s because of the president or unelected bureaucrats; and managing to gain that swindle on both sides of an issue, i.e. pretending one stance to one side and the other to the other.

  3. “If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished?”

    This sentence gives away the game. If the purpose of impeachment is the restoration of justice and the constitution, then the sitting of the previous VP in the position of POTUS is the ultimate accomplishment.

    However, this impeachment is not about that, it is about a few people sitting a person on the throne that THEY approve of. This impeachment is a transparent farce.

    1. “If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished?”

      We will no longer have a Chief Pussy-Grabber (and an ultimate narcissist) in office! That, alone, will be a MAJOR accomplishment! And we won’t be “overturning an election”, we will be overturning HALF an election! Pence was elected, too! He is ***NOT*** Bernie, and he’s NOT AOC! And he seems to have a significantly better character than Trump… And character DOES matter!

      1. You have made my point, but “the ends justify the means” is much easier to write.

      2. I agree that character does matter, but so does divided government. That’s why I’d take Trump over Pence and almost all of the Democrat candidates. And I despise Trump. But Trump can and is being checked by the opposition and even his own party. Pence might get things done…awful social-conservative things.
        And the Democrats in their current radicalized form shouldn’t be anywhere near the levers of power. Especially if they keep the House in 2020.

        1. NEITHER ONE of them should be near the levers of power. Both Team Red and Team Blue have been radicalized to an alarming degree.

          All the Blue Dog Democrats are gone, and now we have “democratic socialists” pushing for complete health care nationalization.

          All of the Rockefeller Republicans are gone, and now we have nativists scapegoating foreigners for America’s problems while wrapping themselves in the flag.

          1. Poor baby jeffrey, always arguing from ignorance.

            The left has shifted much farther than the right. Despite a nod in this statement, you decry the latter’s shift in thread after thread while ignoring the former.

            https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/pew-research-center-study-shows-that-democrats-have-shifted-to-the-extreme-left/

            Youd be happy to live under a socialist if Vox told you it was okay to do so.

            By the way, nobody is scapegoating foreigners you dumbfuck. Pointing out data that immigrants spend more government dollars on average isnt scapegoating. Believing a cap of 1 million a year is plenty I’d not scapegoating. Believing in open borders while having a robust welfare state is retarded, however. Ignoring costs for educating ESL children as 3 to 1 in a system where education is already failing is also moronic. You seem to do the latter often.

            1. Gee what a shock. Jesse the Team Red shill exaggerates the radicalization of Team Blue while minimizing the radicalization of Team Red.

              1. “exaggerates the radicalization of Team Blue”

                Yea, advocating literal fascism via the Green New Deal, Warren, etc and embracing the socialist label is totes exaggerated

                1. “literal fascism”

                  You think the Green New Deal is “literal fascism”? Yes that’s exaggerated.

                  Can we have a discussion on why the Green New Deal is a bad idea without screaming SOCIALISM! FASCISM! CONCENTRATION CAMPS! type nonsense?

                  Yes you’re exaggerating the radicalization of Team Blue in order to scare people.

                  1. “By the end of November, eighteen Democratic members of Congress were co-sponsoring a proposed House Select Committee on a Green New Deal, and incoming representatives Ayanna Pressley and Joe Neguse had announced their support.[33][34] Draft text would task this committee with a “’detailed national, industrial, economic mobilization plan’ capable of making the U.S. economy ‘carbon neutral’ while promoting ‘economic and environmental justice and equality,'” to be released in early 2020, with draft legislation for implementation within 90 days.”

                    “The approach pushes for transitioning the United States to use 100% renewable, zero-emission energy sources, including investment into electric cars and high-speed rail systems, and implementing the “social cost of carbon” that has been part of Obama administration’s plans for addressing climate change within 10 years. Besides increasing state-sponsored jobs, this Green New Deal is also aimed to address poverty by aiming much of the improvements in the “frontline and vulnerable communities” which include the poor and disadvantaged people. To gain additional support, the resolution includes calls for universal health care, increased minimum wages, and preventing monopolies.”

                    “According to The Washington Post (February 11, 2019), the resolution calls for a “10-year national mobilization” whose primary goals would be:[46]

                    “Guaranteeing a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States.”
                    “Providing all people of the United States with – (i) high-quality health care; (ii) affordable, safe, and adequate housing; (iii) economic security; and (iv) access to clean water, clean air, healthy and affordable food, and nature.”
                    “Providing resources, training, and high-quality education, including higher education, to all people of the United States.”
                    “Meeting 100 percent of the power demand in the United States through clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources.”
                    “Repairing and upgrading the infrastructure in the United States, including . . . by eliminating pollution and greenhouse gas emissions as much as technologically feasible.”
                    “Building or upgrading to energy-efficient, distributed, and ‘smart’ power grids, and working to ensure affordable access to electricity.”
                    “Upgrading all existing buildings in the United States and building new buildings to achieve maximal energy efficiency, water efficiency, safety, affordability, comfort, and durability, including through electrification.”
                    “Overhauling transportation systems in the United States to eliminate pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector as much as is technologically feasible, including through investment in – (i) zero-emission vehicle infrastructure and manufacturing; (ii) clean, affordable, and accessible public transportation; and (iii) high-speed rail.”
                    “Spurring massive growth in clean manufacturing in the United States and removing pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from manufacturing and industry as much as is technologically feasible.”
                    “Working collaboratively with farmers and ranchers in the United States to eliminate pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural sector as much as is technologically feasible.” ”

                    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_New_Deal

                    1. Yes, and? Still not “literal fascism”.
                      Here is “literal fascism”:

                      Fascism is for the only liberty which can be a serious thing, the liberty of the state and of the individual in the state. Therefore for the fascist, everything is in the state, and no human or spiritual thing exists, or has any sort of value, outside the state. In this sense fascism is totalitarian, and the fascist state which is the synthesis and unity of every value, interprets, develops and strengthens the entire life of the people.

                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Doctrine_of_Fascism

                      “Literal fascism” is far more totalizing than the GND. The citizen’s individuality is swept away and replaced with a duty to serve the state, in all ways and in every way.

                    2. Jeff, your definition of fascism applies better to communism. Fascism, as defined by Mussolini, is an economic system wherein the state dictates to private business things like prices, quotas, production schedules, etc, without taking ownership. Close collaboration between gov and favored businesses is understood.

                      A very close example is Obamacare.

                    3. Jeff, your definition of fascism applies better to communism.

                      I quoted from an essay written by Mussolini himself. I don’t know how you can get more authentic than that.

                      Fascism is NOT JUST the merging of the state with the market. Fascism is totalitarian – one’s entire identity is associated with duty to the state.

            2. “nobody is scapegoating foreigners you dumbfuck.”

              Perhaps you can explain why, out of all the issues, immigration occupies such a central focus on the right. Why do those foreigners inspire such outsized attention?

              The Republicans have gone from Reagan “anyone who comes here can be an American” to Trump “they’re shithole people”. You don’t think that is a radical change?

              1. Probably the 3+ decades of promises to do something about the increasing illegal immigration that has resulted in 10% of the population being composed of trespassers.
                Maybe the emphasis on “multiculturalism” and the vilification of all things American.
                Maybe dishonest collectivists such as yourself who characterize any opinions not favoring foreign nationals over American citizens as “racism” and whose psychoses lead them to lie about what others have said

                1. Anyone who comes here can be an American.
                  Not everyone who comes here will be, or wants to be.
                  And what does it matter to you, citizen of the world?

                2. Probably the 3+ decades of promises to do something about the increasing illegal immigration that has resulted in 10% of the population being composed of trespassers.

                  See I might have accepted that explanation at face value maybe 5 years ago. But a lot has happened since then.

                  Maybe the emphasis on “multiculturalism” and the vilification of all things American.

                  So the Republican response is to take it out on the foreigners? You’re just making my point for me.

                  Maybe dishonest collectivists such as yourself who characterize any opinions not favoring foreign nationals over American citizens as “racism” and whose psychoses lead them to lie about what others have said

                  Wow, three lies in a single sentence.

                  1. “So the Republican response is to take it out on the foreigners? You’re just making my point for me.”

                    No, that is YOUR misconception.

                    “See I might have accepted that explanation at face value maybe 5 years ago. But a lot has happened since then.”

                    Yes, illegal immigration has continued, seeing massive spikes since… 2014. The long abused estimate of 11 million illegal residents was superceded by a more accurate estimate doubling that number to 22 million.

                    “Wow, three lies in a single sentence.”

                    I stand by my assessment.

                    1. No, that is YOUR misconception.

                      What is the misconception? According to you, one reason why Republicans have become so upset over immigration is because of “the emphasis on “multiculturalism” and the vilification of all things American.” So they think that it’s the immigrants who are “vilifying America” and THAT’s why they want to build a stupid fucking wall? How is this not “taking it out on the immigrants” as I said? How is this not scapegoating foreigners?

                    2. Yes, illegal immigration has continued, seeing massive spikes since… 2014.

                      What spikes? There have been no spikes. Unauthorized immigration has steadily fallen since 2007. See below.

                      The long abused estimate of 11 million illegal residents was superceded by a more accurate estimate doubling that number to 22 million.

                      You are referring to the Yale-MIT study? It is not necessarily “more accurate”, it simply uses a different model to try to count the unauthorized immigrant population. But in either case, there have been no “spikes”.

                      https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0201193

                      So this doesn’t completely satisfactorily explain the issue either. Unauthorized immigration has been steadily decreasing for years, regardless of whatever number it actually is now. So why did that issue shoot to the top of the issue list among Republicans?

                    3. Speaking of the Trumptatorship’s “Big Beautiful Walls”, they are full of almost as many holes as is The Donald’s head!

                      https://www.aol.com/article/news/2019/11/02/smugglers-are-reportedly-cutting-holes-in-trumps-newly-constructed-border-wall-with-saws-and-power-tools/23852359/
                      Smugglers are reportedly cutting holes in Trump’s newly constructed border wall with saws and power tools

                      From there…

                      “The steel-and-concrete portions of the walls, which President Donald Trump has touted as the solution to the flow of undocumented immigrants coming across the US-Mexico border, can be sawed apart with at least one commercially available cordless tool that retails for less than $100, according to the Post, which cites US border officials with knowledge of the damage.”

                      Thanks, Trump and associated knuckle-draggers, for wasting my taxes!

                    4. “So they think that it’s the immigrants who are “vilifying America” ”

                      Poor reading comprehension leads to misconceptions.
                      It is progressives such as yourself vilifying the US and emphasizing multiculturalism, separating and segregating as usual.
                      So spikes in illegal immigration that occurred last year, after DACA, etc didn’t happen?
                      “Unauthorized immigration” – lol, how Marxist “libertarian” of you

                    5. Hey look, the squirrel spent a bunch of time typing shit no one will read while Little Jeffy gets owned.

                    6. It is progressives such as yourself vilifying the US and emphasizing multiculturalism, separating and segregating as usual.

                      Okay so you think it’s progressives who are pushing multiculturalism and “vilification of America”. So what does that have to do with immigration, or a desire to restrict it? Sure sounds like scapegoating immigrants, blaming them for problems that they didn’t cause. Which was my initial point. Thanks for proving it.

                      So spikes in illegal immigration that occurred last year, after DACA, etc didn’t happen?

                      Read the paper that I cited, which YOU were the one to reference.

                      “Unauthorized immigration” – lol, how Marxist “libertarian” of you

                      That is the term used by the study that YOU referenced. Why don’t you grow up and realize that using a technically correct term doesn’t make one a “Marxist”.

            3. “Pointing out data that immigrants spend more government dollars on average isnt scapegoating”

              That’s not even a true statement but right wing media sure likes to create the impression that those furriners are mooching off those hardworking Muricans. Why do you think right wing sources are pushing an anti immigration narrative?

              1. Collectivistjeff with his characteristic bigotry

                1. What bigotry?

            4. “Believing a cap of 1 million a year is plenty I’d not scapegoating. ”

              Tom Cotton thinks 1 million is too high. Is he wrong?

            5. Very interesting data, surprising only in its magnitude and easy measurability. But what’s more interesting to me would be figuring out why this “left” shift has occurred.

              Of course it’s very difficult to ever figure out why people form the opinions they do — if it weren’t, marketing would be a trivial enterprise — so even the smallest insights wold be interesting. Anybody here have any clues?

              1. “figuring out why this “left” shift has occurred.”

                Decadence, Leftist rhetoric being more useful in the 100+ year running progressive era, the Long March through the institutions

                1. The last, I’d say. If people are taught x in school, have x reported to them as news, and have popular media telling them x, then most people will believe x.
                  Same reasons most people throughout history believe whatever religion they were brought up in.

                  1. And anthropogenic global warming.

          2. Most studies show the Republicans have not moved right much at all while the Dems have moved WAY to the left.

          3. “All of the Rockefeller Republicans are gone, and now we have nativists scapegoating foreigners for America’s problems while wrapping themselves in the flag.”

            I think you’re wrong there, the “Reagan Revolution” was just a bump in the road and Bush brought the Rockefeller wing roaring right back. Remember Trump has been a Democrat longer than he’s been a Republican, his “New York values” include supporting gun control, abortion rights, and the Hillary Clinton campaign, he supports the rule of Top Men as much as any Democrat. Trump’s just a fucked-up Rockefeller Republican because he’s a poseur and a social climber and has the same ideas of class as an Alabama trailer park lottery winner.

            The nativists and the scapegoaters and the flag wrappers? They’re political opportunist scum, spineless and gutless and five minutes after Trump’s gone they’ll be as helpless as little blind newborn kittens mewling for a teat to suck on. It’s one good thing Trump will have done, destroying the illusion of the GOP as any sort of principled advocates of liberty and small government, exposing the cocktail party circuit uniparty as one undifferentiated mass of parasites.

            1. Wow, Jerryskids, that’s some powerful and funny (and sadly mostly true IMHO) writing there! Your stuff is often a pleasure to read (admittedly largely because I most often agree with it… “Confirmation bias”, yes, I ‘fess, then, OK).

              Anyway, good job!

            2. Trump’s just a fucked-up Rockefeller Republican because he’s a poseur and a social climber and has the same ideas of class as an Alabama trailer park lottery winner.

              That last part is true, and when I consider the result, I wonder where we can get more like him, because I like the result.

              The part about being a Rockefeller Republican…that I doubt, unless the Rockefeller Republicans have swung into an America First position. His views on international affairs, trade, and immigration are different-to-opposite of what I think about when I think “Rockefeller Republican”.

              I do think the Rockefeller Republicans have changed with the times, as illustrated by Bush 1 & 2. I have trouble imagining Stassen or Javits as being represented by either president Bush, but especially the junior. While the Rockefeller Republicans (and Rockefeller Democrats, for that matter) were comfortable with the Ripon Society, now they’re effectively neocon. But they’re definitely not much like Trump!

      3. “And character DOES matter!”
        Sure. Look at such great presidents as Carter, Ford, and Bush the Elder.

      4. Oh, and the presidents who actually were pretty good, despite horrible characters, like JFK, Nixon, and yes, Trump.

        1. “Good character” is such a convenient shield for corruption and incompetence

    2. He will be just as tempted to abuse that power and just as alone in his burden.

      KMW and most reason staff consider Trump to be the worst President ever while the more than half of American voters don’t. Obama did all sorts of unconstitutional things like ObamaCare and I seriously doubt reason was weekly advocating impeaching Chocolate Jesus.

      Someday reason staff will come to grips with the fact that Democrats will never be President again and Trump is being reelected in 2020 no matter what the Party of slavery does.

      1. Obama did all sorts of unconstitutional things like ObamaCare and I seriously doubt reason was weekly advocating impeaching Chocolate Jesus.

        The Birther Conspiracy was every bit as real as the Russian Conspiracy. Reason still occasionally pats themselves on the back for not falling for the Birther Conspiracy.

        1. Obama used lies about his origins the same way Warren did.

          It’s only just that his lies came back to haunt him.

    3. I’ve also seen leftists discuss impeaching Pence as well.

      1. Maybe they should just try to pass a law to make it illegal to be a republican. There’s certainly no sinister precedents for something like that happening.

      2. This. Anyone who thinks Pence will ascend to the presidency without being tarred as complicit in Trump’s crimes is a liar or a fool. President Pence will face immediate impeachment and removal and Pelosi will take the D’s rightful place in the White House.

        1. Pelosi will not live that long.

  4. Worse, they seem to prefer it that way.

    Well, yeah, this way they don’t have accountability.

  5. This is an excellent article. Thanks KMW.
    The problem is fundamentally not about the person in the WH. It is the power that that person wields. Trump should never have had the authority to dangle money at the Ukrainians in the first place.

    Maybe we really do need a parliamentary system of government instead of what we have. That way the legislature itself has the executive powers and we wouldn’t be having this type of fight.

    1. “Maybe we really do need a parliamentary system of government instead of what we have.”

      No, I’d settle for abolishing the Electoral College. Either that, or bring in enough brown bodies from Mexico to #TurnTexasBlue so that Democrats win every Presidential election for at least the next century.

      #MexicansAreNaturalLibertarians
      #(BecauseTheyVoteDemocrat)

      1. The American electorate is becoming less rural, less white, less bigoted, less religious, and less backward every day. The consequences are predictable. That is why clingers are desperate.

        1. Exactly, Art. As you’ve said countless times — and as decades of data prove — the more money people make, the more likely they are to vote Democrat.

          That’s why all the highly skilled doctors and engineers crossing our southern border are prime candidates to join the liberal-libertarian mainstream: they are extremely affluent and not at all religious. Now we just need a Democratic President to liberate them from Orange Hitler’s concentration camps.

    2. Because parliamentary systems never undo the will of the people. Brexit was completed shortly after the vote, right dumbass?

    3. Every legislature on the planet has proven itself very capable of eliminating its own accountability to the people – and giving it control over the executive merely means that the entire govt would become as unaccountable.

      No taxation without representation was not really about taxation. It was about representation. Before our independence, Parliament had managed to create rotten boroughs and pocket boroughs – while also creating powers for itself to legislate over the Crown re the empire outside the UK. Which created dissatisfaction and calls for reform in both the UK and the colonies (and I include West Indies, India, etc as well in those colonies). We in the US don’t pay any attention now to the English ‘reformers’ then cuz it doesn’t fit the easy narrative for ourselves. But the founders (esp Franklin who spent close to 20 years in England as the agent of multiple US colonies) were completely embedded in those movements. And it can easily be argued that our revolution only occurred because internal reform to get representation was seen as impossible.

      A far better approach is a collegial Presidency. That model didn’t successfully exist then as a ‘government’ – so instead we went with a unitary executive that looked more like what did exist then – a monarchy. But the model does exist now as a ‘Board of Directors’ for corporations, a version of it was proposed in the New Jersey Plan, many states/cities have a form of it (separate elections for Lt Gov, Secy State, etc), as do some countries, and the electoral college itself is an excellent vehicle to make it happen.

      A ‘plural executive’ would be a game-changing way to implement structurally libertarian reforms on the executive branch. Course LP doesn’t do ‘process’ stuff – but I think they would get a ton of votes if they simply recruited the most talented electors possible in each state, publicized those names, and their Prez candidate campaigned to get THAT talent into the executive branch. DeRps can’t really do that. They have to go the anonymous partisan hack route for electors with a charismatic god/Prez.

      1. And by every legislature on the planet has proven itself very capable of eliminating its own accountability to the people I include the US now. We now have the least representative legislature of any democracy – with the most protected incumbents, no change in the legislature size for 100 years and no prospect of that changing anytime soon, no competitive elections in close to 90% of the seats, etc

        We are the worst possible example of a country that should embrace ‘parliamentary’ anything. Everyone in this comment thread is now dumber for having heard this idea from you. I award you no points and may god have mercy on your soul.

        1. Well any transition to a new system of governance should of course be accompanied by a whole lot of reforms. Of course the legislature / parliament should be larger. It is stupid to be so small for so long. There should be instant runoff voting. There ought to be multiple parliamentary parties. Lots of changes.

          1. It’s cute that you think anyoen cares about your opinion. You’re consistently the worst poster here.

            1. Then don’t read it.

              1. What makes you think I did retard.

          2. The ‘lost accountability’ problem is that reform can’t happen if it depends on the broken institutions reforming themselves first.

            Even my favorite reform of enlarging the House (cuz it would create a lot of consequences). Ain’t gonna happen until 350+ critters who support that get elected. Which will take roughly forever unless/until the third parties make it a part of their platform and make that known to voters. Art V convention – won’t happen as long as it remains partisan DeRp.

            It’s one reason I’m trying to think more along the lines of things that can be done without legal reform. Existing stuff that be reimagineered into something new that might create a precedent for doing it again. A plural executive can actually be done by any Prez candidate who promises to use the Electoral College differently and follows through on that promise.

            1. To me a “plural executive” sounds too much like a junta or triumvirate.

              1. To me it sounds more like separation of powers within the Executive Branch

  6. “the authority to dangle money at the Ukrainians”

    True. Presidents have been a’danglin’ in front of every other nation on Earth for 100 years. Something special this year though: Orange Man.

    1. That was reply to chemjeff.

      1. Baby jeffrey is too fucking stupid to understand the reply, so doesnt matter where it went.

    2. In fairness, libertarians have been saying this for a long time. I certainly remember it under Bush and Obama.

      1. In fairness, libertarians aren’t trying to impeach Trump.

      2. Libertarians never promoted or cheerlead impeachment against bush or obama. Even after much greater abuses.

        1. That’s true. I was responding to the comment about the executive having the power that it does.

    3. “Something special this year though: Orange Man.“

      Yeah, poor Trump. No president has been treated this unfairly before. (BTW. Obama’s birth certificate and Bill Clinton’s dick would like a word with you.)

      1. I know, right? Where did we get to the point where the president turned into the Victim-In-Chief?

        1. The odd part about Trump and his minions whining about unfair treatment is that it was Trump himself who personally spearheaded the birther campaign against Obama.

          1. He had a handful of comments about it. What imagined campaign do you actually think occurred? The media protected obama from day -180. They always protected him. You think he was vilified? You think obama had an active deep state presence actively undermining him like the resistance?

            Are you ignorantly stupid or just stupid?

            1. Trump offers $5M for proof of Obama’s lack of citizenship. Hardly a handful of comments.

              1. Trump spearheaded the birther movement?

                I bet you think Epstein killed himself too.

                1. No one said he “spearheaded” it. But he did just a wee bit more than say a few words about it either.

                  1. No one except for Eric, in this thread, of course–

                    Eric
                    November.2.2019 at 9:23 am

                    The odd part about Trump and his minions whining about unfair treatment is that it was Trump himself who personally spearheaded the birther campaign against Obama.

            2. “handful of comments”

              Do you get paid for your shilling?

              1. “Do you get paid for your shilling?”

                Does some pay you for stoooopid? If so, they’re getting their money’s worth.

          2. You progressive shills live in your own, miserable world.

            1. You’re projecting again Cupcake. 😉

              1. You have nothing of substance to say and can’t even come up with an original reply, hivemind bitch.

                1. Hey!!! It’s my turn to play “Internet Tough Guy” today! And you told me yesterday that “hivemind” is the safety word. Your not playing fair Peanut!

                  1. If this is your idea of tough guy, it’s no wonder you’re such a little bitch

                    1. Mmmmm. More Nardz tears. So tasty (and arousing)!

          3. “The odd part about Trump and his minions whining about unfair treatment is that it was Trump himself who personally spearheaded the birther campaign against Obama.”

            You misspelled Hillary.

            And the impeachment attempt over it was…when?

            1. And Jesse says the right hasn’t been radicalized.

              We’ve gone from “the president must uphold the highest standards of decency” to “the president gets to do whatever the previous guy did, no matter how awful”

              1. Keep forgetting…standards are only relevant for one side of the equation, not both. That’s how people truly concerned behave.

                How many times did I call for Obama’s impeachment? Infinitely fewer times than you or Reason have for Trump. And I had ACTUAL crimes he committed.

          4. Obama’s Literary Agent Said He Was Born in Kenya?
            Snopes rating TRUE. What a Golgotha poor Obama had to suffer all those nonbelievers believing what he insinuated to his publishers.

        2. Right around impeachment. Try to keep up.

          1. You do know Clinton WAS impeached for lying about getting a blow job, right? But it was Ok then because: “Muh TEAM!”.

            1. Hey you got it right. He lied in court. Now point out an equivalent crime for trump.

              1. IDK. Causing you to get an unforced erection for another man??? That’s gotta be a crime in whatever hole you occupy.

            2. “You do know Clinton WAS impeached for lying under oath in a trial and then encouraging and helping others commit perjury”

              FTFY.

              1. Paula Hound Dog´s lawsuit never went to trial. The District Court granted judgment on the merits against her, and she sold her right to appeal that judgment for cash on the barrel head.

      2. Bill clinton was impeached for lying in court you lying dumbass. Obama was never impeached. Try again dear.

        1. Call me when Trump is impeached. Until then it’s called a partisan which hunt. And it’s been the norm since Clinton.

    4. Do you sincerely believe that what Trump did w.r.t. Ukraine is absolutely no different than what any other president has done w.r.t. foreign aid? No difference whatsoever? Absolutely the same?

      1. Fucking hilarious if you think Trump represents the apex of corruption w.r.t. foreign aid.

        1. Fine so which other President used his personal lawyer to conduct shadow diplomacy on behalf of his client’s personal interests.

      2. Seeing as even Ukraine didnt know they were being leveraged while we can point to hundreds of examples where countries knew they were being leveraged…

        Was this an honest question or just more baby jeffrey idiocy?

      3. Well, VP Biden did an ACTUAL quid pro quo, so Trump has done less than he.

    5. Presidents have been a’danglin’ in front of every other nation on Earth for 200+ years.

      Treaties with pirates even.

  7. “If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished?”

    From the perspective of Charles Koch’s net worth, perhaps not much. Everybody knows it will take a Democratic President to bring us out of the high-tariff / low-immigration #DrumpfRecession.

    However, impeachment should still be the goal of every patriotic American. We simply cannot allow a 3 decade Russian intelligence asset to continue his illegitimate occupation of the White House.

    #TrumpRussia
    #LibertariansForGettingToughWithRussia

    1. I propose we vote for legitimate occupation.

  8. ╔════╗───────────────╔═══╦═══╦═══╦═══╗─╔╗╔╗╔╗
    ╚═╗╔═╝───────────────╚══╗║╔═╗╠══╗║╔═╗║─║║║║║║
    ──║║─╔══╦╗╔╦════╦══╗─╔══╝║║─║╠══╝║║─║║─║║║║║║
    ──║║─║╔═╣║║║╔╗╔╗║╔╗║─║╔══╣║─║║╔══╣║─║║─╚╝╚╝╚╝
    ──║║─║║─║╚╝║║║║║║╚╝║─║╚══╣╚═╝║╚══╣╚═╝║─╔╗╔╗╔╗
    ──╚╝─╚╝─╚══╩╝╚╝╚╣╔═╝─╚═══╩═══╩═══╩═══╝─╚╝╚╝╚╝
    ────────────────║║
    ────────────────╚╝
    ____________________________________________________

    1. I was sold at, “De-regulating”.

  9. As far as replacing Trump with Pence, I’m afraid Pence doesn’t have much fight in him. He rolled over on religious freedom, allowing the government to run roughshod over the consciences of small business owners without even having to prove that doing so was the least restrictive means of achieving a compelling government interest. To Pence, the only compelling government interest that counted was the interest in placating his political opponents.

    But it won’t work. If he even tries to be a fighter like Trump they’ll dispose of him too.

  10. Impeachment is part of the constitution and is a political process. I would be fine seeing Pence behind the big desk. But realistically, unless something changes in the next 6 months, the senate isn’t going vote to convict, so it is a non issue. But the President has too much power! All the Obama haters bitched about this non stop for 8 years and went silent when Trump got elected. They thought “our turn”, while missing the point they were right about. We need to stop any executive from having such unfettered power, as corruption and power go hand in hand! I love the end of the article, “Impeachment is the hair of the dog after an all-night executive power bender. Sure, a Bloody Mary might make you feel better for a little while. But in the long run, it might be better to get off the sauce entirely.” Been there, done that.

    1. All the Obama haters bitched about this non stop for 8 years and went silent when Trump got elected.

      Nah they didn’t go silent, they just changed their tune to NOW WE PLAY BY YOUR RULES. Which is of course a convenient rationalization for throwing overboard any pretense of principle.

      1. Further proof Jeff is fucking ignorant as to the argument.

        Keep cheering on the unelected bureaucracy baby jeffrey. Keep moving power further away from the people.

        1. Collectivistjeff is reflexively anti-American- of course he doesn’t want a government of, by, and for the people.
          He prefers the abstract foreigner, with abstract progressive values, and a one government world

          1. This is Nardz’s way of saying “chemjeff is a doodyhead”

        2. This is Jesse’s way of saying “chemjeff is right but I won’t admit it”

    2. What unfettered power are you actually seeing? Courts have stopped trump ending an obama era EO for fucks sake. There has been nothing unfettered about his presidency. It’s nice you morons finally woke up to this. But now.youve just transitioned to cheering on the unfettered power of the bureaucracy instead of the presidency. That’s what you dont fucking understand here. You are letting the IC openly manipulate democracy. This isnt as bad as the Brexit mess, but close. You also openly allow resistance against a politically elected power. You’re literally advocating for removing power even further from the people.

      1. “You’re literally advocating for removing power even further from the people.”

        Actually it’s more like decentralizing power away from the state so that “the people” can’t use elections to fuck around with everyone.

        There’s plenty of instances where I want you and I to have power over our own lives but I don’t want “the people” to have collective control over our lives. Wouldn’t you agree?

  11. I find it humorous that Reason is trying out other avenues of.justification for this impeachment. They are starting to realize how laughable the case by Democrats has become. Now they attempt to switch the argument to one of executive power and it being time to rebuke it at some point. This time of course is driven more by orange man bad than anything else. It’s not like Trump killed a citizen ex judiciously or started new foreign wars. Created new immigration rules put of thin air w DACA. Expanded federal control of 17% of the economy with ACA. So why now?

    1. Yea, they almost got a good article out of it

    2. What article did you read, and what site have you been reading for the past decades?

      I didn’t just read an article justifying impeachment. I just read an article talking about how stupid and pointless it all is (which btw, I’ve read from you too) with the reasoning behind it being that there is too much executive power.

      I only started reading Reason in 2000, but they’ve been consistently against executive powers and overreach the entire time, full stop. In fact, every single item you listed I read about here on Reason with a film throated rebuke of what Obama was doing.

      I get that you might still find Trump to be the best president of the century, and the best candidate for 2020, but to not to throw out all intellectual honestly on your way there.

      1. Forget it. A good Reason article for Jesse begins with “Execute Obama”

        1. Psychoticjeff, here to lie.

          1. Like when you call me a psychotic, a Communist and “anti-American”? Lol

            1. You are psychotic. You continuously invent statements and arguments for other people and insist that they’ve made them. Your relation to the world is according to wildly erroneous interpretation of sensory information. You treat your fantasy of what the world is as if it were reality no matter how often reality proves different.
              Your approach to geopolitics is absolutely communist, as you deny the legitimacy of nation states and boundaries. That may not make you full communist, but your perception of the world and the arguments you make are entirely from a collective perspective within a collectivist paradigm.
              Your anti-Americanism is evident in the quick accusations of bigotry you resort to, your derision of American tradition/culture/history, your denial of the existence of anything uniquely American beyond land (ironic), and your insistence that foreigners be privileged over citizens.

              Such feelings are not uncommon among decadent, coddled people. You are resentful for existing, but can/will not face the fact that this emotion is internally motivated, and your ideology is manifested from this. Since you value yourself based on your ideology, you can’t risk finding its basis reactionary and incorrect via introspection, thus instinctive psychological defense mechanisms kick in to prevent you from such discovery. You are Good because you are Morally Right, though all that resentment must have some cause… it must be those things you find to be Morally Wrong, like intolerance and prejudice. You see so much of it in the world! Why is there so much Evil? It must be because you’re surrounded by Evil people, the intolerant and prejudiced. And it never gets better! Ah, but you’ve never questioned you perception or interpretation, because you’re always Right. The pushback you receive is Wrong, not you. Because if you are wrong, that might mean you’re the source of the bigotry that you so hate, and if you’re the source you might discover that you’re intolerant and prejudiced… and if you’re intolerant and prejudiced, you’re not Morally Good, you’re suddenly Morally Wrong – therefore Evil! But how could you tolerate yourself as an Evil Person???
              No, your existential unhappiness must not be something you’re personally responsible for! Anything but that. It must be your neighbors. They must be making you feel this way, because they’re Evil People – and you’re the Good Person who sees it.
              At least you have a whole collective to go through the experience with.

              1. If one is a White Knight, and the dragons have all been slain… why one must find new dragons! More dragons! Because, one is Good because one fights dragons. Look: there’s another dragon over there! Laud me for fighting it!
                But people start to notice that for all the dragon blood you’ve spilled, you don’t claim it’s getting any better. In fact, you claim it’s getting even worse. People then wonder if some of those dragons that you’ve slain weren’t actually dragons, but maybe innocent victims. Eventually the applause slows, then stops as it becomes obvious that the dragons are gone but you still see them everywhere.
                Then you cry that the biggest dragon of all has arrived and it must be slain! You and all the other Good People march out to fight it, throwing everything you have into the battle. It is an existential struggle after all.
                But the dragon doesn’t die. The dragon survives every blow – indeed, the dragon seems to be getting stronger! Even worse, bystanders are murmuring amongst themselves that it isn’t really a dragon…

                The realization that your fantasy is not reality is difficult, because it is only in the place of your fantasy that you have value. Your very identity is dependent on this fantasy, but reality is increasingly resistant.
                Humans have an operating system of sorts, a paradigm through which they interpret stimuli so as to be able to respond appropriately. “That iron is glowing red, which means it’s hot, which means it will damage me if I touch it – so I will not touch it.” 2+2=4.
                That paradigm, the algorithms formed through experiments, experiences, motives, and myths, is there to enable Man to survive and grow. It serves to craft and tune expectations, so I press the right pedal and go forward when its appropriate to go forward, the left pedal when I need to stop. Man needs to be able to trust those expectations to survive. When the math is off, the paradigm erroneous, Man’s survival is threatened. When expectations and outcomes often conflict, it’s trouble.
                But Man must also value itself to survive. That value gives it the will to act. Much of that value comes from, and is reinforced by, Man’s paradigm. The key variable in the equation.
                So there can develop a struggle between an erroneous paradigm and reality. Value being the will to live, paradigm takes precedence. Psychological defense mechanisms kick in to preserve the paradigm and adjust stimuli to minimize its threat. As long as Man avoids catastrophe, this is possible.
                But at some point, when the paradigm is applied and keeps getting back ‘error’ messages, the paradigm becomes critically unstable. At that point, the paradigm itself becomes the greatest threat to Man’s survival and an instinctive defense mechanism must intervene – nervous breakdown.
                It’s a last resort, as there is no guarantee that Man will survive nervous breakdown, but the paradigm must be destroyed so that new, more accurate, neural pathways can replace it.
                Learning is painful, which may be why pain is the best teacher.
                The progressive era will end, one way or another

              2. That is quite the story. I’d love to know where you copied it from.

                1. Then Google the text.
                  If you find something, I’d be quite surprised.
                  Fortunately, we all know that if you do find something that indicates “copying” you’ll be eager to post it.
                  Go on – find that dragon!

                  I think you’ll be disappointed though, as some people actually develop their own thoughts and ideas, coming to conclusions based on a variety of inputs and reflection.

              3. But let’s consider some of your more specific claims, dragons notwithstanding.

                You are psychotic.

                That right there is a disrespectful and slanderous lie.

                You continuously invent statements and arguments for other people and insist that they’ve made them.

                No, I don’t. What I do, is I don’t accept bullshit rationalizations at face value. You don’t like it? Boo hoo.

                Your relation to the world is according to wildly erroneous interpretation of sensory information. You treat your fantasy of what the world is as if it were reality no matter how often reality proves different.

                Erroneous? How the hell do you know? You are correct that my interpretation of the world is different than your interpretation of the world, because I am a different human being than you. That is something that you lack – humility in acknowledging that no one person has a monopoly on the “correct” way to view the world or the “correct” way to approach life. You seriously need to grow up and walk a mile in someone else’s shoes before you truly understand this.

                Your approach to geopolitics is absolutely communist, as you deny the legitimacy of nation states and boundaries. That may not make you full communist, but your perception of the world and the arguments you make are entirely from a collective perspective within a collectivist paradigm.

                You don’t even know what my “approach to geopolitics” is, because you cannot see beyond the Westphalian nation-state system that we currently have. Here is a clue about what I believe. I think obtaining citizenship in a country should be analogous to signing up for cell phone service. A person can sign a contract with a particular government for services to be rendered – for a fee (called “taxes”) – and that government would be obliged to provide the agreed upon services, by contracting with independent firms in that person’s area (fire, police, etc.). Governments would compete with each other for providing the best services at the lowest cost. No more of having citizenship tied to a particular chunk of land – I could be a citizen of Switzerland while my neighbor could be a citizen of France. The contracts would have arbitration processes for resolving conflicts. That is the type of vision that I see for my “approach to geopolitics”. Please, tell me how that is “communist” or even “collectivist”.

                Your anti-Americanism is evident in the quick accusations of bigotry you resort to,

                Believe me, they’re not quick.

                your derision of American tradition/culture/history, your denial of the existence of anything uniquely American beyond land (ironic),

                I don’t deride American tradition/culture/history. I just don’t believe in the myths that are taught to us in grade school. America is a good country, just not the best at everything in every way, and it’s also done some pretty horrible things in the past. I’m not going to fall for grade school level jingoism anymore. Being a *realist* about America is not the same as hating America. But I would not expect a nationalist to understand that, he is wrapped up in the flag so tightly it cuts off blood flow to the brain.

                and your insistence that foreigners be privileged over citizens.

                That’s not true either. I’ve said all along that citizenship is different than residency. I insist that foreigners, as human beings, with regard to their fundamental human rights, not be treated WORSE than citizens. That is not a “privilege”, that is an entitlement of every human being. And if you disagree with that, take it up with Thomas Jefferson.

                Such feelings are not uncommon among decadent, coddled people. You are resentful for existing, blah blah blah

                I don’t know why I would be resentful for existing. I am very grateful to have had the opportunities in my life that have enabled me to achieve the successes that I have. Every day when I wake up and go to work, I try to do some good in the world. I’m not a saint, I never claimed I was a saint. I have my faults same as everyone.

                I’d also like to point out that your entire fanciful story is, if I had dared to write such a thing about someone else, an example of what you would label “psychotic”, as it is a projection of a false reality onto someone else and believed with such conviction that in your own mind, it becomes the truth. You have projected this fairly bizarre false reality on to me that I’m an anti-American, communistic, psychotic, decadent, social justice White Knight who resents being alive. It is amusing, but false. I’m just a guy. I do fight for things that I believe are right, AS DOES EVERYONE ELSE ON THE PLANET, and the primary thing that I want to see happen is for the coercive entities in our society – most notably the state – to just leave people alone to pursue their own dreams. Only when people are set free from their chains of bondage can they fully explore their potential and do what they were meant to do on this planet. I believe that with the very fiber of my being. That is why I call myself an individualist. It is the individual who brings about change. And if I am a white knight fighting against dragons, the dragons that I”m fighting are the dragons of authoritarianism, REGARDLESS if those dragons are Red Dragons or Blue Dragons.

                What are YOU fighting for, Nardz? What is your vision? Why don’t you spend some time telling us all the changes that you would like to see happen here.

                1. You’re an easy read, chemjeff.

                  1. You mean, it’s easy to project a caricature onto me. Well, yes it is. It’s easy to project a caricature onto anyone.

                    It takes experience, wisdom and humility to accept people for who they are, instead of trying to force them into the mold of someone they are not.

                    As I said I am not a perfect person, sometimes I fall into the same trap too, but at least I will recognize in the end when I’m doing it and to stop. Will you?

                  2. And now that you have read my ideas on my “approach to geopolitics”, I challenge you to state why you believe that it is collectivist, let alone “communist”, at least compared to the status quo.

                  3. You have no response for my comment because what you wrote about me is a FANTASY. It is a story that is based on your internal narrative about who you think I am, not based on who I really am.

  12. The impeachment stuff is all the product of the Republicans and Trump not taking the 2018 elections seriously. Will they make the same mistake in 2020? All the confidence about Trump sweeping whomever emerges on the Dem side may be misplaced.

    1. How can you beat the most perfect candidate ever if you didn’t take it serious?

      1. Oops. You said 2018. My bad.

  13. The formal process is difficult for Americans to comprehend.

    Hmm. Perhaps our congresscreatures could explain it to us.

  14. If Trump gets impeached….

    If Trump gets impeached, there’s enough votes in the Senate to declare his Presidency illegitimate and therefore Pence illegitimate as well, they’ll block Pence from appointing a VP, impeach his ass and Nancy Pelosi will be President. She appoints Hillary VP, resigns, gets re-elected to her vacated House seat and re-assumes the Speakership.

    That’s the dream, anyway. You know why the dream might become a reality? Because Republicans are stupid and they’re not willing to fight. Right now, the Dems in Congress are running some bullshit political theater trial-by-media “impeachment” inquiry, a totally illegitimate coup attempt. And what are the Republicans doing? Instead of simply denouncing the whole shitshow as illegitimate and walking away from it, they’re demanding to be let into the process so as to legitimate it. How fucking stupid do you have to be to denounce your opponents running a rigged game and then demand to be let into the game?

    Walk away, let the Dems do whatever the hell they want to do. When they come out with the Articles of Impeachment, somebody stick a cattle prod up Mitch McConnell’s turtle ass and have him refuse to accept them in the Senate. Let’s see if the Supremes want to get involved in this shitshow.

    Assuming the Court sides with the Dems and orders the Senate to hold a trial, take a page from Nancy Pelosi. Remember when Nancy said there are no rules for impeachment in the Constitution and she can make whatever rules she wants? There ain’t no rules for the impeachment trial, either. Call the Senate to order, toss the Articles on the table and call a vote. 5 minutes. When the Dems squawk about how you gotta call witnesses and hear testimony and allow cross-examination and drag out the impeachment bullshit for a week or so, tell ’em to fuck off, there’s nothing in the Constitution that requires the Senate to give more than a second’s worth of time to the bullshit.

    But the GOP won’t do that, because they’re stupid and they care more about what nasty things the NYT and the WaPo and the rest of the Dems might say about them then actually taking a principled stand and telling the whole lot of them to go fuck themselves.

    1. “When they come out with the Articles of Impeachment, somebody stick a cattle prod up Mitch McConnell’s turtle ass and have him refuse to accept them in the Senate. ”

      Nah. Have him begin the trial. Starting with a discovery discovery where everyone gets put under oath – from Mueller on down, and including every single House staffer ever involved in the ‘proceeding’ and/or inquiry, along with all the ‘witnesses’ to that.

      The Greatest Shitshow (and Massive Perjury Trap) on Earth.

      Then , after the criminal indictments are handed down, Trump can request a ruling on the merits of the articles, at which point the Senate throws the articles of impeachment out.

      This is charade is never going to fall into Republican control.

      1. What’s a perjury trap? Is that like not knowing what “is” is?

        1. LeaveTrumpAloneLibertarian
          November.2.2019 at 12:05 pm
          “What’s a perjury trap?…”

          Pretty sure scumbag here is serious. And that stoooopid.

  15. Katherine . . . DEAD! SOLID! PERFECT! Your diagnosis and cure are absolutely correct.

  16. If the trend continues, then every time the opposite party controls both houses of Congress, both the prez and veep will be impeached and removed. In fact, they’ll just step down in January every time that occurs, and we’ll in effect have a parliamentary system wherein the majority party gets to install its own chief.

    1. Continuous ‘round the clock impeachment’s!

  17. I fear the imperial presidency is a natural outcome of the increasing share of the electorate comprised of idiot-children. Their fetish-level worship of “democracy”, coupled with a human tendency to select and follow authoritarian leaders, points to a future president with supreme power–and future national strife akin to what happens in all dictatorial regimes.

    1. I personally favor a dictatorship of the proletariat. That way the right people can rule. You?

      1. And mass murder; always a fave of lefty fucking ignoramuses.

  18. If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished?

    Is this a rhetorical question? You mean the prospect of watching all these Trumpian cultists bang their keyboards over their heads at the prospect has no value to you, KMW? Come on… tell me it’s not entertaining.

    1. Fucking ads loading…
      Senate won’t convict. Why does this matter?

      1. Oh… it’s driving Dear Leader fucking bonkers. It’s good for an commie anarchist like me to watch this plutocrat flail.

        1. Oh… it’s driving asshole lefties fucking bonkers.
          Fixed.

          1. I’m thoroughly enjoying this GOP shit show { Pours coffee, types in http://www.foxnews.com, bong hit} ahahahahaha… marvelous.

            1. I’m thoroughly enjoying the on-going tears of the left; three years and no end in sight.

      2. Political theater; a chance for every TDS victim to shed tears publicly.

        1. I got a significant tax cut from Trump. I thought he was coming after rich elitist Californians like you and me. Whew! Thank God he wasn’t serious about draining the swamp and all he really was in it For was stroking his ego and feathering his nest. Crisis averted, I guess.

          1. Pay your mortgage yet, scumbag?

  19. It’s very easy to tell how Trump has screwed up nearly everything:

    “US economy defies threats with a solid job gain for October”
    https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/us-jobs-data-show-hiring-fueling-growth-66679745

    TDS victims hardest hit!

    1. It’s hard to tell on a chart of job growth versus year where the Trump presidency started and when it was run by Obama though. Why not? Shouldn’t there be a discontinuity?

      1. Tell us about how the left saw the economy after Trumps election. Oh, wait:
        “Paul Krugman: The Damage Wrought by Trump’s Election Will Last Generations”

        1. Yeah, as I said, Trump runs the economy pretty much like Obama did.

          1. “Yeah, as I said, Trump runs the economy pretty much like Obama did.”

            One more cheery-picking lefty ignoramus:
            Obo started from record lows and managed to hold growth down to what it is now as we approach record highs, and ignoramuses like you fail to understand such variables. Or, more likely, you simply lie about them in the hopes that others might be as abysmally stoooopid as you and buy your horseshit.
            Further, you now just gloss over those horrendous predictions? Were they all lies? Why should we take any lefty predictions as anything other than one more pile of shit?

  20. Has anyone bothered to point out that holding federal funds is NOT quid pro quo?

    1. Ahahahaha… can you imagine what these GOPers would be doing if Obama held up money to a foreign country in order to dig up dirt on Trump and his inept goon squad?

      1. “Ahahahaha… can you imagine what these GOPers would be doing if Obama held up money to a foreign country in order to dig up dirt on Trump and his inept goon squad?”

        So the best you got is some imagined hypothetical?
        Did you flunk logic, or did they just toss your sorry ass out the door?

      2. It wasn’t even necessarily digging up dirt or asking for information though I get your drift. The scheme was to create the dirt by having Zelensky do a press conference on CNN announcing the big investigations. I guarantee you Barr would have played along with the charade and used the Zelensky investigation to support his own crooked scheming.

        1. “…I guarantee you Barr would have played along with the charade and used the Zelensky investigation to support his own crooked scheming.”

          Tell us how the walls are closing in, Pod. It’s always good for a laugh.
          Oh, and keep whining; it’s amusing.

          1. The walls are closing in on Giuliani. He’s under criminal investigation for the scheming he has done on behalf of Trump in Ukraine. Cohen is in prison for the scheming he did for Trump. Trump taxes are under subpoena in criminal probe in NY. Trump is about to be impeached. The majority of the country supports removing him from office and we haven’t even gotten to public phase of the inquiry. A vast majority supports the impeachment inquiry.

            1. Keep whining pod; your tears are amusing.

            2. Tulpa and Sevo reflexively jumping to the defense of Rudy fucking Giuliani, most libertarian mayor ever.

              1. I was jumping to the mockery of an idiot using “WALLS CLOSING IN!!!” but thank you for getting triggered anyway.

              2. Tony
                November.2.2019 at 4:28 pm
                “Tulpa and Sevo reflexively jumping to the defense of Rudy fucking Giuliani, most libertarian mayor ever.”

                I’d suggest you enroll in a community-college reading comprehension class. They’re free, so they are worth much, but perhaps you can get to 5th grade level.
                No one ‘defended’ Giulani, we made a laughing stock of one of your co-idiots.

                1. Yup sounds about right. Who gives a shit about what Giuliani did. It’s all about DRINKING LIB TEARS, right?

                  The day that Trump actually does shoot someone on Fifth Avenue, I predict the Sevos and the Tulpas of the world will be like “DID YOU SEE THE HYSTERICAL REACTIONS FROM RACHEL MADDOW? IT WAS EPIC!”

                  1. This guy^
                    Totes rational

                    1. And not at all like a young hihn…

      3. You might not know it, but most foreign aid is conditional, so it is almost all quid pro quo.

    2. Conditioning payment of funds on investigation of a political opponent is quid pro quo.

  21. New York Times/Siena College polling released last week indicates that a majority of voters in Arizona, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin support an impeachment inquiry, with a plurality of Florida voters supporting it as well. Trump won all six of those states in 2016.

    Compare this to Clinton’s 72% approval rating during his impeachment. It’s too bad you GOPers couldn’t get this level of support over Clinton, who fucked his intern in the Oval Office closet (and ejaculated! Eww!} and then lied his ass off in court— claiming he couldn’t figure out what the word “is” meant. Epic fail.

    1. So?
      You got company being a fucking lefty ignoramus.

      1. So?

        What i’m Getting at is how pathetic you GOPers are at persuasion. Piss poor. I bet I could talk the average person— especially in the United States!— that a campaign of back yard iron smelting is better than what the average GOP wingnut wants to do.

        1. “…I bet I could talk the average person…”

          I’ll bet the average person you hope to impress has an IQ higher than yours.
          And laughs at you.

    2. Shouldn’t we be praising Republican bootlickers for how far they’ve evolved on the subject of adultery?

      1. Cry about Republicans on a libertarian website more.

        1. There’s a libertarian website somewhere?

          1. You’ll notice how he plays coy to avoid acknowledging how stupid it is to go to a libertarian website like Reason and complain about Republicans.

            1. You were so incensed, incensed I tell you, at the notion that other people might be using alternative handles.

              Which medications do you suppose you should be on but aren’t?

              1. I don’t think you can post one instance of me being incensed.

                That’s you. About Republicans. On a libertarian website. Because you’re an imbecile. And everyone laughs at you.

                1. You do nothing but defend Trump and, now, Giuliani. What am I supposed to make of that? Those guys aren’t within a fucking lightyear of anything libertarian except maybe tax cuts for people 10,000 times wealthier than you will ever be. Which would you rather be known as, a pathetic chump or a fucking loon?

                  1. Pretty straightforward, link to me incensed about socks or I win.

          2. All these “libertarians” who come to Reason and complain about how un-libertarian it is, I would honestly love to know what other website or forum that they would recommend for what they regard to be a more libertarian take on things.

        2. News flash, Republican =/= libertarian, especially nowadays

  22. This is a good article and I agree with the idea of a rebalancing of power between the Executive and Legislative Branch. What Ms. Mangu-Ward missed was the causes for legislative atrophy. I would suggest that the lack of competitive elections, particularly for the HR, and that a major contributor is partisan political redistricting. Representative are assured of reelection with out have to do a whole lot of work. Non competitive districts also have the effect of eliminating moderate members who might move compromise legislation through the House.

  23. The drive to invest the federal government (and the executive) with new powers continues unabated.
    Animal abuse is just the latest thing people want to federalize.

    https://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/politics/460387-congress-needs-to-end-animal-cruelty

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    https://seotoolstation.net/best-alternative-to-yoast-seo/

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  26. Typical reason bullshit. A Republican is caught red-handed deflect with putting the Constitution on trial.

    Mangu is outdoing Gillespie.

    1. Who got caught red-handed? I haven’t seen that article.

    2. Sevo is my bitch
      November.2.2019 at 2:55 pm

      Got called on your bullshit? Too butt-hurt to use your real handle?
      Aww, poor, poor lefty piece of shit. The world is just unfair, isn’t it? You always end up second to someone smarter than you…
      Well, get used to it. As a fucking lefty ignoramus, it’s going to be that way the rest of your life.
      And I’m laughing in your face, shitstain.

  27. Excellent Article. Very Intriguing.

    Impeach the rotten policy – Not the man. What’s ironic is Trump has cut the policy and that is the very reason the left wants to impeach him. The impeachment mob isn’t against Big GOV and rotten policy – they insist on it so much they want to remove the road block.

  28. Every presidential election in my memory has been immediately followed by cries for impeachment. Clinton of course. Bush for war crimes or something. Then Obama’s birth certificate or whatever. Now Trump’s whole call or whatever. It’s nothing but sour grapes on both sides.

    1. Phone call – stupid autocorrect.

    2. The reasons people called for Obama and Bush to be impeached weren’t for the legitimate reasons they maybe should have been impeached. Obama’s birth certificate didn’t matter for shit, not when he was purposely violating the Fourth Amendment rights of 300 million Americans. For Bush, likewise, the causes of the Iraq War weren’t necessarily something impeachment worthy, but violating the Fourth and Eighth Amendment rights of all sorts or people probably was. Bush practically dared his critics to impeach him for mistreating terrorists–because he knew Democrats would lose that argument at the ballot box. Instead, his reelection campaign may have turned on issues like Terry Schaivo.

      I appreciate that for most people, these calls for impeachment are sour grapes. That’s not how I roll. Impeaching Clinton over Monica Lewinsky was horseshit, but what about all the money that was supposed to go to the widows and orphans who lost their savings in the un-FDIC insured Madison Guaranty, but somehow ended up in his campaign fund instead? What about the money he accepted from the Chinese government? These were not empty objections coming from me. I’d have supported impeaching Clinton, Bush, or Obama for these reasons–and part of the reason is that their politics were bad, too. We might have done as well or better with others.

      In Trump’s case, I don’t see anything that rises to the standard of what Clinton, Bush Jr., or Obama did, and, furthermore, the alternatives at this point may include installing authoritarian socialists like Sanders or Warren. Because political preferences are a legitimate consideration doesn’t mean it’s all sour grapes this time–just like it wasn’t when Clinton was on China’s payroll, Bush was violating the Constitution with impunity, and Obama was violating the constitutional rights of hundreds of millions of Americans.

      If the alternative to Donald Trump were either Vladimir Lenin or Joseph Stalin, I might legitimately consider looking the other way when Trump did something awful. In this case, I still haven’t seen any evidence that Trump has done anything awful. I saw a transcript of a phone call that contradicted the testimony of an anonymous whistle blower at the CIA, who claimed there had been a quid pro quo. There wasn’t. I’ve seen testimony selectively leaked by a secret hearing in the House. I haven’t seen any evidence that would rise to the standard of impeachment yet–certainly not in an election year.

      1. Ken….I am netting out in pretty much the same place. There is nothing in the Ukraine call that rises to being impeachment worthy. Not even close.

  29. Impeachment is part of a system that entirely depends on the assumption that someone like Donald Trump will never assume high office.

    A wannabe tyrant? Of course. That’s the point. A cretin? Naturally. But someone who could be these things and so much more without having public support completely collapse across the board, thus justifying impeachment and removal without much turmoil? Democracy can’t withstand a critical load of stupidity. Not anywhere.

    They didn’t predict automatic weapons and they didn’t predict FOX News. That the constitution isn’t up for dealing with these social ills is not their fault. Great men that they were, they weren’t fortune tellers.

    1. “They didn’t predict automatic weapons”

      Lol wut?

      I understand now. You know literally nothing about firearms, that’s why you constantly beclown yourself by saying patently false, demonstrably wrong shit lololo.

      1. Oh, you’re Tulpa. It must be internet hour at the home.

        1. That explains why you’re on. How’s that AIDS infection you got? Still covered in gross sores?

          1. Tell me, when they find your body, will there be anyone there to claim it, or will the indifferent ME staff simply send you off with a comment about the smell coming from your tit fat?

            1. Tony – “They didn’t predict automatic weapons”

              History – “Does this idiot not realzoe how wrong and stupid that is”

              Tony – “I was dumb and wrong so TULPAAAAAAAAAA!!!!”

              1. So they did anticipate automatic weapons? If they were so preternaturally smart, why is Trump president now?

                Look dude, I am not intimidated by insane. But it does make me uncomfortable. Go find some of your own shit to smear on the walls. It’s Saturday. That’s what you do on Saturdays. Off you go.

                1. “So they did anticipate automatic weapons? If they were so preternaturally smart, why is Trump president now?”

                  Shorter Tony – “I was wrong about guns but WHAT ABOUT TRUMP!!!”

                  Because he won a fair election.

                  /checkmate.

                2. Hi Tony,

                  The variously near-infinite-in-number versions of “Tulpa” have included “Tulpa” stealing the poster-IDs of other common posters, using invisible characters. So, the idea that “Sarah Palin’s Buttplug” here, is really the ID-hijacked character known as the has-no-ethical-or -moral-bottom, EVIL, bottomless, knows-no-limits, asshole as is known as “Tulpa”, is actually a VERY plausible hypothesis! Tulpa = The Evil One, is probably NOT going too far!

                  1. Ohhh! TDS group-grope!
                    Whine together, you collection of losers.

                    1. TDS goes both ways, you know… Pro-Trump TDS as well as anti-Trump TDS! Take the Trump to the dump, I say!

                      Trumpty Dumpty, He’s quite off-the-wall,
                      Trumpty Dumpty won’t stay in His toilet stall
                      He just goes ahead and takes His shits,
                      Totally regardless of whereever He sits
                      Whenever He simply, no way, can sleep,
                      He Twits us His thoughts, they’re all SOOO deep!
                      He simply must, He MUST, Twit us His bird,
                      No matter the words, however absurd!
                      He sits and snorts His coke with a spoon,
                      Then He brazenly shoots us His moon!
                      They say He’ll be impeached by June,
                      Man, oh man, June cannot come too soon!
                      So He sits and jiggles His balls,
                      Then He Twitters upon the walls
                      “Some come here to sit and think,
                      Some come here to shit and stink
                      But I come here to scratch my balls,
                      And read the writings on the walls
                      Here I sit, My cheeks a-flexin’
                      Giving birth to another Texan!
                      Here I sit, on the pooper,
                      Giving birth to another state trooper!
                      He who writes these lines of wit,
                      Wraps His Trump in little balls,
                      He who reads these lines of wit,
                      Eats those loser’s balls of shit!”

                    2. SQRLSY One
                      November.2.2019 at 7:40 pm
                      “TDS goes both ways, you know…”

                      No, it doesn’t. But to grammar-school intellects such as you exhibit, that’s a common fantasy.
                      Suffice to say, your idiocy is not surprising.

                3. “…Look dude, I am not intimidated by insane…”

                  Certainly NOT! You embrace it!

    2. The constitution set defined powers and limitations on government based upon principles of liberty. Yes it allowed slavery, but that is a red herring.

      What the founders didn’t anticipate was eliminating the states’ veto power with the 17A. They didn’t anticipate the commerce clause being used to justify unlimited power over anything involving money changing hands. They didn’t anticipate executive regulatory agencies with the power of all three branches. In fact separation of powers was specifically meant to prevent that. They didn’t expect judicial deference that switches the burden of proof on the constitutionality of legislation.

      Automatic weapons? Phpppt! That’s small potatoes compared to their founding document being used as toilet paper by those who swear to uphold and defend it.

      1. I’m not so sure they didn’t anticipate those things.
        There’s the 9th amendment, there’s their background as revolutionaries, and there’s Thomas Jefferson’s famous quote

        1. Tocqueville said America is great because America is good.

          We ain’t so good anymore, and we are paying the price.

  30. It’s not about executive power.

    THIS says so.

  31. The evidence is clear and convincing. The party that hired the Don beat the pants-suit off the party that wants to ban electricity, thereby dooming the planet to death from sharknados. But remember those bookies who bet The Don would lose? They are laying odds he does not resign, trounces impeachment and gets reelected by voters who understand that energy increases life expectancy and know how to convert ºF to ºC. The unvarnished graph of temperature for the past century is a horizontal line, no measured increase in temperature.

    1. Hank, I’m not sure my de-coder ring deciphers your latest, but you seem to suggest that the market is betting on Trump.
      Regardless of the Obo-apologists above, I’d agree. Obo started at the bottom, managed to hold down recovery at a rate so low, it is now the most that a near-record high can accomplish.
      You can argue that neither Obo nor Trump is the ’cause’ of the improvements, but I’ll argue that people with a LOT of skin in the game seem to be betting on Trump where they were tepid, at best, when Obo held office.
      More importantly, those with a LOT of skin in the game are quite certain they are NOT going to be dealing with Pence as POTUS; only lefty whiners are ‘betting’ on that. By whining here.
      Hey, scumbags! Where’s your money? Did you go short when Trump was elected?
      Put your money where your keyboard is; join turd in making a stupid bet and then not paying it off!
      Or commie-kid, taking a loan, and then letting honest people pay it off for him.

  32. OT:
    As someone here pointed out last week, changing the clocks is like cutting a foot from one end of the blanket, sewing it onto the other end and claiming it is somehow longer.
    Usually, when there is a particularly stupid bit of legislation, like, oh, the ethanol mandate, or minimum wage, or DST, you can follow the money and find the lobbying source.
    Who in hell is the ADM or SEIU behind DST? Musk may have the connections, but he don’t make no AA batteries.

    1. I agree with you there. And where is our leadership brave enough to grasp the hands of time and return them to their rightful place? Time stealers that is what they are. Manipulators of the fourth dimension.

      Oh sure you get one more hour to buy beer before the magical cutoff time at the all night quick-e-mart but Lenny behind the counter is stuck with one more hour on his shift. What about him?

      Seriously if government can’t even fix this one simple problem why are we even talking about actually complicated problems like health care and immigration? I am amazed these dolts can tie their own shoes.

      1. Just got cartoon showing Pelosi holding a sign requiring ‘passing impeachment to find out why!’.
        So this year, it’s pretty much TDS, but why has it gone on this long?

        1. Impeach the lot of ‘em. Make it like jury duty. Just pick 500 names at random. Let them meet for two weeks twice a year. During which time the president will hold office hours. The rest of the time to serve as chief host of the country at official state dinners and shaking hands with visiting dignitaries.

    2. I agree. DST is an abomination. Kill it with fire.

      1. Many failed attempts have already been made.

      2. DST was originally a money saving idea.

        But now it is really a safety feature so that kids don’t wait for the bus in the dark in winter. That is a legitimate reason to inconvenience the rest of us a little.

        1. The children, bless their hearts, should never be exposed to darkness and the sun coming up over the horizon. Sometimes the morning star, the planet Venus shines in the East just before dawn. I remember seeing it and wondering what it was in the chill of the early morning.

          Here it will be cold in the mornings for the next six months. Sometimes it rains or snows. They will need coats, hoods, backpacks, proper footwear.

          We have streetlights now even here in flyover country.
          The sun, the moon and the stars. Darkness and light.

          If you need to start the school day an hour later that is an option.

        2. That’s utterly absurd.

    3. Shorten spring and lengthen fall.

      Whose bright idea was that?

      Hint – it was once called War Time

      1. War. Precisely. The whole concept is based on acts of tyranny and oppression. Must keep the proles busy at the factory to churn out our war machines at the lowest possible cost.

        The despots will not stop until they have crushed our spirits and squeezed every drop of labor from our bodies. What next? Studies have shown that Monday night football negatively impacts on worker productivity the following morning and will be henceforth abolished.

        We do not deserve liberty until we rise up and overthrow the shackles of altered clock time imposed by petty despots. Rise up and join me this April. We shall gather on the footsteps of the Capitol and throw our weary alarm clocks at the feet of the tyrants of time.

        Also can you fix the traffic problem on Rt. 8 already ? The pretzel factory lets out the same time every day and you can’t get anywhere. No we don’t need a new bike path.

        Who’s with me?? Aaaaaaaaarrrrrr

    4. I used to not care much about DST one way or the other.

      Then I started riding my motorcycle to work every day, and let me tell you, that extra hour in the morning for things to warm up? Makes a difference.

      Simple fact is, we, as a culture, have this notion of “regular business hours”, even for jobs that don’t need it. So long as that remains true, optimizing daylight around that 8-to-5 schedule will help a significant minority of folks.

  33. There’s a third option, apply the NAP to the government and prohibit it from initiating force.

    1. That’s just crazy talk.

      1. In an insane world a sane man must appear insane.

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  35. If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished?

    The objective is not to remove Trump from office, it’s to get a Democrat elected; any Democrat (they’d also settle for a RINO, but that’s not in the cards). And the reason isn’t (just) blind partisanship: Democrats want to get in power badly because Trump is interfering with their usual gravy train of corruption, nepotism, and war mongering.

  36. Trump is a jerk, I would like to see him out of office, but he has done nothing impeachable. I do not agree with many of his policies, I don’t think a man of his character should be President. However, he is far less guilty of anything to get impeached or convicted than Clinton was. Clinton did commit perjury. Trump has done nothing nearly as illegal.

  37. Change the constitution so that the Speaker of the House is not the second in line to the presidency. It should not be a big deal to remove a president. After all, with Pence in charge the Republicans can staill carry out their agenda. The problem is that if Pence goes the Democrats get control and that is a huge conflict of interest in the impeachment proceedings.

    Impeachment is necessary. We also make way too big a deal about it. We make too big of a deal about presidents anyway. They make promises that they have no control over since it is up to congress to pass laws. One thing is clear though, a moral degenerate like Trump should have been impeached two years ago. The GOP cries foul but they have done absolutely nothing to check Trump’s abuses. So they can cry me a river. They could have had Pence.

    1. “The problem is that if Pence goes the Democrats get control and that is a huge conflict of interest”

      In order to accomplish that they would have to successfully impeach Trump, then refuse to approve the nomination of the proposed VP, then successfully impeach Pence. They aren’t even close to approving articles of impeachment, much less getting 2/3rd of the Senate to agree with them, so that scenario seems a tad bit unrealistic.

      Beyond that it is not so much a ‘conflict’ of interest as it is a direct political interest. That’s how a republic operates – elected representatives expressing their political prerogatives.

  38. If, at the end of all this, President Mike Pence sits behind the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, what has been accomplished?

    We’ll have a president that doesn’t depend on lies, nepotism, and cronyism to the same extreme that our current president does?

    You’re trying to make it about politics, but no, it really is about Trump. Democrats (both politicians and non-politicians) might not like a President Pence, but he is imminently preferable to a President Trump.

    1. Trump is worse in these regards than, say, Lyndon Johnson? Mostly, Trump’s sin is to not be a Democrat in his campaigning. His predecessor was every bit as venal as you imagine Trump to be. Biden and his son demonstrated the art of familial influence peddling. Hillary and her husband showed us the art of personal influence peddling. The nation has a long history of drunks and lechers in Congress and in the White House (Think T. Kennedy, J. Boehner, the guy who was fished, drunk, out of a fountain in D.C.). Nothing’s changed.

  39. Limiting the powers of the executive branch in today’s American political climate would merely transfer more power to the house and the senate, where mob rule can more easily rule the day, as we’re seeing now.

    The executive branch only has a single face and will attract more interest and criticism. In reality, congress is a more menacing threat to freedom and fiscal responsibility. The GOP tried to cut the rate of increase in future spending (not even an actual cut in spending) and the democrats fought them tooth and nail. At state level one party rule leads to immediate and actual losses in personal liberty every single day.

  40. The (a?) problem with the powers of the executive branch, and the power of the Congress, is too much money flowing through the streets of Washington. Find us a way to restrict the Federal government to just those things permitted to it by the Constitution, and the rivers of money will dry up by themselves. Health care, and health care insurance, for instance, have no legitimate place in the federal government, per the Constitution. Neither do the Dep’t of Agriculture, Dep’t of Education, Dep’t of Energy, OSHA, EPA, and a host of other Federal agencies. They all exist because Congressional dicks thought them a good idea at the time, and no one made a principled objection or legal challenge to them.

  41. Katherine wants Congress to more robustly exercise it’s Constitutionally granted powers yet doesn’t want the Congress to investigate the President when allegations are brought forth by his own executive branch employees that he has used Congress’s power of the purse for his own political benefit. How does this help the Congress more faithfully exercise its Constitutionally granted powers and act as a check on the executive branch?

  42. What the author leaves out if that NOW Democrats complain about the supraConstitutional powers of the Executive when it is used against them. Not when FDR or Clinton use them. If Democrats did not have double standards, as WMAL’s Chris Plante says, they’d have no standards at all.

  43. What the author leaves out if that NOW Democrats complain about the supraConstitutional powers of the Executive when it is used against them. Not when FDR or Clinton used them. If Democrats did not have double standards…

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