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General News    H3'ed 2/6/20

The Wrenching Truth About Mitt Romney's Impeachment-Trial Vote Is That It Doesn't Matter

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'Mitt Romney had a chance to rewrite his own place in history. He seized it. “They will note merely that I was among the senators who determined that what the President did was wrong, grievously wrong. We are all footnotes, at best, in the annals of history, but, in the most powerful nation on earth, the nation conceived in liberty and justice, that distinction is enough for any citizen,” he said.  It infuriated Trump, whose son began demanding Romney’s expulsion from the Senate Republican Conference even before the senator had actually cast his vote. The trial was more fake than even the disinterested public could have anticipated—the first impeachment trial in the Senate’s history not to call a single witness. Its end is a relief. At least we will not have to hear any more bogus speeches about the Founding Fathers or pabulum about the sanctity of the process.'

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I began teaching in 1963,; Ba and BS in Education -Brooklyn College. I have the equivalent of 2 additional Master's, mainly in Literacy Studies and Graphic Design. I was the only seventh grade teacher of English from 1990 -1999 at East Side (more...)

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Susan Lee Schwartz

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Here is a wonderful read about the he concept of evil in fiction... by a fiction writer.

She says: "I've always been fascinated with the concept of evil. As a writer of fantasy, creating evil characters with believably twisted motivations is something I've struggled to realistically portray. It's hard for me to relate to the most common evil villain tropes the nihilistic "let's burn the world down" villain, a.k.a., the Joker, or the ruthless "do anything to get what she wants" bad guy (e.g., Narnia's White Queen) who removes any obstacle to get her way and remain in power or the pure play lunatic who murders people out of extreme sociopathy and delight (e.g., every villain in every slasher movie).

For me, the most "real" villains (from a fictional standpoint) are three dimensional. They have a backstory that almost always elicits sympathy like Darth Vader, a man who lost everything and became an instrument of evil, but who nevertheless retained some inherent good which ultimately enables him to spare the life of his son. It's harder for me to understand the motivations of The Emperor in Star Wars, the puppetmaster and driving force behind the Empire's darkest deeds.

Trump: "Trump moves through the world like a caricature of an actual person, the physical embodiment of the seven deadly sins. He is all about greed, lust, gluttony, wrath, envy, sloth, and pride. It is fascinating and horrifying to see these traits played out with such thoughtless banality on a near-daily basis. Trump displays one or more of them with almost every Tweet he lets fly."

Trump's Tweets paint a picture of a deeply insecure, vindictive man with an almost complete lack of empathy for other human beings. It doesn't matter if you're a child (Greta Thunberg), if you're dying from cancer (John McCain), if you're a grieving mother (Ghazala Khan), or a marginalized person whose life has been threatened by bigots if you're not with Trump, you're against him, which means you're fair game for an attack.

Throughout his three-year stint in office, he's demonstrated a level of evil that is surprisingly one dimensional. If he was a character in one of my novels, I'm sure he'd read as forced and phony a total cliche. Maybe this is part of why I have so much trouble creating believable bad guys I don't understand how anyone can be so thoroughly devoid of morality without a single redeeming quality. Yet, Trump is that guy.

"The evil enablers: "Trump is a caricature of an evil villain clueless, often enraged, easily swayed by compliments and praise, and brutal in the thoughtless way of a child pulling the wings off of a fly. But men like Lindsay Graham and Mitch McConnell offer up another brand of evil altogether. In many ways, they are far worse than Trump."

"Evil in the era of Trump isn't just about one man. It's embodied in the self-serving cowardice of a Republican party that refuses to stand up to Trump, even as he moves closer and closer to becoming a dictator."

Submitted on Thursday, Feb 6, 2020 at 6:53:33 PM

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