Trump can't fire Congress
I hate to break it to you Donald Trump supporters, but the United States of America is not some corporation controlled by one CEO.
Trump says he is going to build a wall along the Mexican border. No he's not. He might request that Congress finance building a wall, but other than that, he has no say. Trump says he is going to increase the military. No he's not. He might request increases in the size and financing of the military, but other than that, he has no say. Trump says he is going to take care of our veterans. No he's not. He might request increases in the VA budget, but other than that, he has no say.
Trump still hasn't figured out that under our form of government, the president can enforce laws, but he doesn't make the laws. Trump is used to telling his board of directors or television cast members what to do. If they don't do it, he replaces them. What is he going to do when he tells the Senate or the House what to do, and they say no? This is real life. It is not some television show, and he can't fire them.
James D. Miniard
Paul's caucus scheme
I'm a lifelong Republican, but Rand Paul's 2016 presidential caucus arrangement with the Kentucky Republican Party is disgusting and indefensible.
With politicians already ranked below pond scum in most polls, how much lower can they go, and how stupid do they think we are?
This is not how it works in the real world. You can't seek another job while asking your current employer to hold open your present job in case the new one doesn't work out. It will be a moot point come caucus time in March, however, because Paul's presidential candidacy won't last that long. And let's hope we're not dumb enough to re-elect him to the Senate.
Paul B. Mulhollem
GOP bus of clowns
How insane has the right wing of the Republican Party become? Donald Trump, really? Since the Tea Party/Know Nothing insurgence of 2010, our government has been infested with individuals whose entire platform has been: "I don't know anything about governing, I hate government and I will do everything I can to make sure it fails."
After two more election cycles with these morons pushing the agenda, our government is stagnant, petty and partisan.
Consider this: Elections are like job interviews. Do you want a pilot who has never flown, a surgeon who has never been in an operating room, or a college professor with only a GED?
Our system of government is built on compromise and the promise that both the majority and the minority have equal priority.
Sadly, we have been taken over by simplistic absolutists with no desire for anything but their agenda, regardless of how detrimental it is for the country. But true to form, the right-wing bus is being piloted by a bunch of clowns who failed their driver's test.
Maybe we should just join them. Donald Trump's birth certificate, anyone?
Commentators and nervous Republicans continue to disparage Donald Trump despite his résumé and the presidential job description, which are a perfect match, given the precarious state of America.
Trump's early success is no mystery. There are conscientious Americans in every demographic group who want America to be great again. His unvarnished words speak their language fluently.
For example, in July, interest on our $18.3 trillion debt cost us $32.4 billion. Those two looming tragedies coupled with another debt-ceiling hike, uncountable illegal aliens, an inept foreign policy, corrupt cabinets, and a stalemated Congress indisputably confirm the four significant truths in this Trump quote: "Current politicians are stupid, incompetent, all talk, and no performance."
Moreover, current politicians have produced other despicable conditions, like the 16 million children who go to bed hungry every night. How could that happen in a land blessed with cornucopia from coast to coast, border to border?
Barring a miracle, if another teleprompter-reading, truth- and performance-challenged politician is elected president in 2016, that mistake multiplied by another eight years of status-quo leadership will put our beloved America on the endangered list.
Not just money — fear
Our political campaigns are not supposed to be about negativity. We are trying to elect men and women who have the gifts, wisdom, experience and cooperative qualities to govern us at all levels in a very challenging and difficult time. This is not about who can raise the most money or create sound bites that appeal to our various fears.
We need to identify those who have qualities of leadership, statesmanship and maturity to create teams who will guide us through our emerging challenges. Some of these are internal, finding fair solutions for taxation, immigration and our energy needs; others are international as we seek ways to promote world justice and peace.
Will we get such persons identified and elected?
Howard O. Reynolds
The Gipper returns
Nearly 40 years ago, as a recent college graduate, I sat with my dad one day, watching the news, during the 1976 presidential election season. Since I was just beginning to tune into the emerging candidates, I was interested to see one of them featured whom I had heard about but had not yet had an opportunity to hear speak.
I listened to Ronald Reagan for just a few minutes before I was deeply impressed by his wit, confidence, clarity and common sense. Turning to my dad, I pretty enthusiastically said, "That's the man who should be president!"
Many election cycles have come and gone since then, and I have been hot and cold on different candidates, but I have never had that same reaction until the first time I heard Matt Bevin speak last year.
Whether you are a Democrat or Republican, Libertarian or Independent, I encourage you to put yourself in a position to listen to him engage with and speak to an audience. Don't settle for sound bites. Just really listen to him once and see if your instincts tell you the same thing mine do: "That's the man who should be governor."
Be a Democrat, Conway
If Jack Conway wants my Democratic vote, he must act like a Democrat.
Do not tell me how he "stood up to Obama," or how he will "fight the EPA on coal."
The EPA has the health of your grandchildren's planet in mind, and he knows as well as I that coal, regardless of what the EPA may or may not do, has gone the way of the great auk.
Perhaps he will recall what happened to Alison Grimes when she made the fabulous decision to obscure the fact that she voted for her president who, despite unprecedented efforts to obstruct governance and thwart him at every turn, has accomplished much. Since Conway is appropriating the language of his Republican opponent, he might as well go ahead and accuse your president of being a Muslim, Kenyan, wealth-redistributing socialist.
I need to see an ad that praises the accomplishments of my president. My ballot for any Democratic presidential candidate in our red state is already a waste of time, but I had hoped for a Democratic gubernatorial candidate worthy of the title.
Run like a Democrat. Win or lose as a Democrat.
Trump's true goals
The made-for-TV reality show we call the Trump campaign is designed to accomplish a few goals:
First, it gives Trump the attention he always craves; it makes him feel important.
Second, it pulls the debate to the far-right fringes. When the inevitable drop in his poll numbers occurs, he will declare victory and quit the race. This will achieve the goal of making Jeb Bush (the inevitable candidate) appear to be a moderate.
Of course, Bush will bring in the same failed advisers that his father and brother used to create economic collapse, transfer wealth to the super-rich, and create unlimited military spending and perpetual war.
The new world order that the Bush family has been trying to create will be fully achieved. It is one where military contractors, oil companies and the top 1 percent of the rich will have global domination. The rest of us get prisons, a militarized police force to control protest and dissent, and debt loads that will ensure slavery to corporate interests.
So, enjoy the "reality" show and remember my words. You are being fooled.
Founders on immigrants
I was just re-reading the Declaration of Independence, and one of the grievances set forth in the document was King George's endeavor "to prevent the population of these States" by "obstructing the Laws of Naturalization of Foreigners."
The signers of the Declaration called King George a despot. Is it fair for me to equate those who are opposed to a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants with despots too? And to equate those who believe in a pathway with those sons of liberty who sought "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?"
Two hundred thirty-nine years later, the issue is still unresolved. Maybe we should all re-read the Declaration and discover what our Founding Fathers gave their blood, sweat, lucre and tears for.