Gratitude to Teddy Quinn and to my neighbors in the Morongo Basin who gathered to read the Mueller Report. Thank you as well to Assemblyman Chad Mayes who, alone among state GOP officials, called out Trump over his racist attacks on four junior congresswomen.

Mayes said it most eloquently. “This is beyond unacceptable, it is wrong and abhorrent.” And he added, “Dear Fellow Republicans, we must speak out and return ourselves to decency. This cannot be who we are!”

Thank you as well to several specific village elders, Owen Gillick, John Freter and Red Greene, individuals who personify civility and social justice through their thoughtfully composed opinion pieces and actions.

I understand that there can be professional and social costs associated with speaking out. D.C. support may be withheld from office holders and office seekers. Parishioners may seek other houses of worship. Community leaders may be consigned to the sidelines. Friendships may be jeopardized.

But in a land that is built on the rights of the individual, what are we defending if fear and ignorance dictate that we stay in line and keep our mouths shut?

What is the message conveyed to those who seek guidance in the behaviors of their community leaders?

(29) comments

don krouse

Thank you, Greg, for always bringing high level comments to the pages of this newspaper. I fully agree with you and I hope the numbers of people who will stand up and speak honorably while divulging their names and not hide behind pseudonyms to speak their piece come forward.

Greg Gilbert

I know and work with people throughout the Basin who are conservatives, many belonging to partisan groups, and I am grateful for what I consider the loyal opposition. I can't imagine that it's easy for them to stand quietly by and accept the convoluted logic that dismisses Mueller’s findings, a runaway deficit, and wholesale denials of climate science. It’s one thing to stand idle when meaningful social discourse is so debased, but to remain silent over moral travesties is a major disappointment. The voices of our churches and people of influence are needed in the public sphere as never before in my lifetime. Trumpism is not conservatism. It’s ugly, base, and divisive. I’d love to see the Lincoln Party stand up and say that this President does not represent the party of Lincoln. I want ministers to speak as a body of local religious leaders and say that Trumpism does not represent the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. I believe that people fear reprisals, and I understand that. But surely they can speak to specific points, can’t they? I know that they’re smart and aware and informed, that they haven’t fallen in line because they agree with Trump, so the only reason for silence is fear—and that in itself is telling.

sixgun98

Mr. Gilbert... exactly which "findings" in the Mueller report are being dismissed. From what I read, there were no findings. Climate science you say? Don't you mean Junk Climate Science? Temperatures have been falling for over a decade, quite the opposite of the "sky is falling" procrastinations by all those so-called scientists. Ha, I remember Algore telling us we would all be dead by 2010 if something wasn't done. It was very nice of all of you scaremongers to change the terminology from global warming to climate change once you realized there was no actual warming. As a matter of fact there is no real evidence tying any climate change to anthropogenic activity, the Petition Project debunks these wildly false claims, by real climate scientists. It is really about ruining the gas and coal industries isn't it? What is really ugly, base, and divisive is those traitorous congresswomen who hate our country, our capitalism, and our way of life and seek to alter our free Republic forever. It is evident that you know nothing about the teachings of Jesus Christ as he fought the likes of these horrible women every day. There was nothing racist about what Trump said.... nothing. Real patriots do not fear you or your fellow RINOs. Mayes was an arrogant, self-loving idiot when he was on the Yucca Valley Town Council and he remains so to this day in Sacramento. Funny how I never hear people like you and Mayes call out the democrats when they say things that are actually racists and vulgar... oh say like "we are going to impeach the mother f****er" or the blatant anti-Semitism of these wacky four congresswomen - and that in itself is telling.

Greg Gilbert

The Mueller Report will likely be explicated beginning tomorrow. The Report establishes 1) Russian interference and 2) Efforts by the Trump campaign and presidency to obstruct, interfere, delay, and hamper the investigation. Where he should have instigated a 911 style commission to study Russia’s attempt to control America’s Presidential election, he obstructed and even celebrated this attack on our democracy by a hostile foreign power. His dealings with Deutsche Bank, his indebtedness to Russian Oligarchs, his hiding of tax records, and the ugly Venn diagram of his business and political dealings all suggest to me that the first thing he’ll do when out of office is post bail. As Governor Inslee said, “I hope that he gets the top bunk.” As for climate science, I receive contrary reports on a regular basis, glossy, well document, and convincing. But with a little digging, it turns out that absolutely ALL of them are funded by big oil. I read the science and know from travel and a broad array of sources (scientists of all nations, United Nations reports, meteorological sites, etc. and etc.) that the planet is chocking on garbage and toxicity. At the very least, we should give the benefit of the doubt to the planet, not phony, defensive, politically motivated pseudoscience. Finally this, Trumpism is a manipulative con that’s only interested in moving the people’s money into the pockets of the mega-wealthy. Money does not trickle down, it percolates up from an energized purchasing class. That the wealthy are the job creators is the biggest lie of all. Since Reagan we’ve watched the buying power of the electorate go steadily down. Low employment and lousy wages are the legacy, as is the transfer of power to the wealthy, not the people. Government that governs least governs best, yes, but a livable minimum wage, environmental safeguards, a healthy infrastructure, healthcare, and the abolition of Citizens United would all offer a way to kick start a healthy economy. As for Jesus, the Sermon on the Mount, the Great Commandment, the Prodigal Son, and, let us not forget, 1 Corinthians 13 – all make it abundantly clear that many so called Christians are enthralled by the money changers. One last point, disagreeing with Trumpism is not anti-American, and anyone who loves freedom should understand that. Holster your weapons, “sixgun.” You’re making hollow points.

Branson Hunter

Assemblyman Chad Mayes is a leader. I can't thank him enough for his voice in this matter.

TwoToeJoe

Mueller's investigation was not directed to investigate Russian interference. The purpose of the investigation was to determine if the Trump campaign had any links or coordination with the Russian Government(collusion) and any matters that arose or may arise from the investigation. Hence the independent counsel was appointed and led by Robert Mueller. If Mueller was simply investigating Russian interference he would have investigated Christopher Steele, Fusion GPS, and the Hillary campaign for using Russian propaganda in the dossier as a tool to control America’s Presidential election. The purpose of the Mueller investigation was to cover up the activities of the Hillary campaign and the DNC. They hired Fusion GPS, who hired Christopher Steele, who then hired Russian operatives to create the fake dossier. This fake dossier was then used four times to lie to a FISA judge and get warrants to spy on the Trump campaign. The Russian collusion allegation was a big lie as the Mueller report so stated and is now commonly referred to as the biggest political hoax ever. Now since that despicable effort has been exposed the very same people are clamoring to find something else in the attempt to bring the Donald to his knees such as banking records, IRS filings, and fake political dealings. The Green New Deal was not about climate change. The climate change advocates finally stated the true purpose of their agenda which is to fundamentally change America from capitalism to a supposed socialist utopia. The Green New Deal was a manipulated con about universal healthcare, free college education, government-provided jobs, family and medical leave, vacations, retirement security, and the abolition of “farting cows.” It also calls for total “economic security” for anyone “unable or unwilling to work.” Socialism has never worked. Marxist dreams has always failed. Corporations do not vote. Freedom loving people vote. Success in life and individual wealth does not come from the government. Government that governs least governs best. A great President by the name of Ronald Reagan once said "Now back in 1927 an American socialist, Norman Thomas, six times candidate for president on the Socialist Party ticket, said the American people would never vote for socialism. But he said under the name of liberalism the American people will adopt every fragment of the socialist program." Ronald Reagan also so rightly stated "The most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help". Those who want to inject Marxism upon our way of life destroys our constitution and American values. Anyone that believes in freedom should understand that .

Greg Gilbert

I’ve read Mueller, and he couldn’t clear Trump of complicity. He left it to the House to determine his culpability, and we’ll see what happens. As for the role of business, all that I want are sensible regulations that prohibit big money from dictating to our government what it can and cannot do. Socialism is hardwired into our system. Our military, infrastructure, and safe foods are all provided through our tax base, as is Social Security, federal pensions and prisons. The same applies for libraries, municipal, state, and federal parks, police forces, fire protection, the purity of our water, the care of our veterans and so much of what a well functioning government ought to be doing for its people. And, I might add, despite Betsy DeVos’s efforts to abolish and privatize America’s schools, we retain free public education, a place for Americans to grow up together, a core commitment by Jefferson, Adams, and Franklin, a means of building a meritocracy, not an aristocracy. An energized system of capitalism requires a well paid purchasing class, people who reap the benefits of a nation where its wealthiest entities ask what they can do for their country. If you tout the stock market and low unemployment and ignore that vast numbers of Americans are working several low wage jobs, sans benefits, and with no time for school or family, then you’re seeing only what you want to see. When you cheer for the cessation of the Affordable Care Act while offering nothing in return other than overcrowded ER rooms, I have to ask: what is it exactly that you do stand for? Do you sanction this behavior? Surely you must understand that capitalism unchecked by a democratic government is Oligarchy, dictatorship by the wealthy. Oligarchy is not nice. It is economic Darwinism that eats its young, devours itself, and takes the planet with it.

TwoToeJoe

Complicity you say? Every thing our president does or say is some sort of conspiracy to some. Robert Mueller job was not to exonerate but to determine fact from hearsay. The fact was Donald J Trump and his campaign did not conspire with the Russian government to win the election and was so stated in the report. Robert Mueller was not appointed by Congress and did not work for Congress. He was appointed by acting Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein. His findings were handed to Attorney General William Barr whom he was working for and Bill Barr graciously submitted the report to congress. Robert Mueller did not want to testify to congress and so stated. His appearance will be because he was threated to be subpoenaed. He very well knows that he will be pressured by both political parties and his appearance will reflect the huge political theater all politicians are well known for. He has stated he will testify only upon to what the report contains and he does not want to be the center focus of a political sideshow. Some how or some way someone wants Robert Mueller to state that there was collusion and obstruction of justice. There was no collusion nor obstruction or he would have so stated in his report. He did not leave it to the House to determine guilt or innocence. He gave his report to his supervisor William Barr for adjudication. There will never be closure even after his testimony. Betsy DeVos never advocated to abolish and privatize America’s schools. She is a school choice advocate which public educators and institutions regard as a threat to their monopoly. It is a well known fact that private schools outperform public schools and any given day. An energized system of capitalism employs people that produces the purchasing class and these people reap the benefits of the stock market with good well paid employment. Let that stock market crash and see what happens to employment. There is a reason why people are working several low wage jobs, sans benefits, and with no time for school or family. Any fool could figure that out. The possibility exist that are lazy, apathetic, and most likely the majority of them are probably just idiots. There is a reason why so many people do not work at all and still have housing, food, and all the time in the world for school and family. And in that case any person can figure that one out also. No one is complaining about spending our tax revenues on infrastructure such as our National Defense, roads, and schools as we have done for years. People are complaining about the money we are taking away from our National Defense, roads, and schools and subsidizing the utopian socialist agenda such as the ACA. Funny how that did not alleviate the problems with emergency rooms and did a fantastic job of raising premiums for many while a few were rewarded with subsidized healthcare. Some win while many more suffer. We were promised lower premiums, keeping our policies and doctors but somehow things did not work out. What is it exactly that you do stand for and do you sanction this behavior? Sounds much like the old occupy wall street crowd that existed a few years back but now have the nice moniker of Socialist Democrats. Surely you must understand that socialism unchecked by a democratic government is oligarchy, tyranny by the elites. Marxism is not nice. It is a failed ideology that eats its young, devours itself, and will revert us back to the stone age.

Greg Gilbert

Watching today’s hearings didn’t tell me anything that I didn’t know already. After witnessing efforts to scatter diversionary chaff into the winds by some on partisan point, I’m hopeful that even hardcore Trumpists understand that he is an enemy to America’s security. The level of lies, misdirection, and cooperation with an avowed hostile power should be sufficient to anyone who loves America to want to prosecute him to the full extent allowed by law. As for DeVos, she guts public education funding and shifts funding to for profits which have never matched American public education success measures. We the People is a monopoly that I embrace. Regarding the stock market, it only bears a relationship to the wealthy, not everyday people. The “utopian socialist agenda” you speak of concerning healthcare is, in reality, the hallmark of civilized nations, a right that saves money and lives. When countries provide healthcare, people are happier, less likely to go bankrupt, and spend their discretionary funds on goods and services. Successful governments reside on a scale where capitalism and socialism work in concert, as in America. The question really is the extent to which our government can improve our lives. Marxism says that the state controls the means of production, and I’m not aware of anyone who supports that.

Branson Hunter

One of the regular posters in here wrote this: "The purpose of the Mueller investigation was to cover up the activities of the Hillary campaign." Is this the way to come to the table to discuss important issues? The statement is extreme and obviously erroneous.

Branson Hunter

Wow. A regular contributor of comments wrote this: "There is a reason why people are working several low wage jobs, sans benefits, and with no time for school or family. Any fool could figure that out. The possibility exist that are lazy, apathetic, and most likely the majority of them are probably just idiots." [end of quote]. Why the contempt and loathing of families working two jobs. This statement is disturbing. The manifest benefit of free speech is that ideas that are so outrageous or egregious will be known to be just that.

TwoToeJoe

Wow! My extreme and obviously erroneous statement regarding the origin of the Mueller Investigation is presently being investigated by IG Michael Horowitz and US Attorney John Durham. It may well be an unimportant issue but the possibility may exist that Hillary and the DNC may not have hired Fusion GPS to dig up opposition research on Donald Trump. The possibility may exist that Fusion GPS may not have hired Christopher Steele who bought Russian disinformation to produce the dossier. The possibility may exist that the Russian disinformation was not used to initiate the FISA warrants to spy on the Trump campaign. The possibility may exist that those FISA warrants did not lead to the politically motivated Mueller Investigation. Hopefully for Greg Gilbert and your sake Branson all of these supposed allegations turn out to be false. Maybe we should not investigate the unimportant origins of the Mueller Report because it will make all those sad and crying ones reading and interpreting the Mueller Report even more depressed. I would bet that after the investigation taking place now regarding the origin of the Mueller Report is completed we could have a good discussion about real corruption. My statement regarding the possibility of why people likely work two low wage jobs with no benefits stands. I have no contempt or loathing for them. If they are happy so am I. If it was me maybe I would seriously work on some self improvement and get a higher paying career with good benefits. It is never impossible. Many people I know are successful and work hard on self improvement every day for both themselves and their families. I can certainly understand why some believe my thoughts and ideas are interpreted as being outrageous and egregious. I too believe others have outrageous and egregious opinions. Thanks to our great Constitution and the Bill of Rights we should thank all for exercising free speech and provide the fantastic discourse we see in these discussions!

Greg Gilbert

Where are the adults? We have a report and testimony that sets out meticulously detailed evidence that Russia tampered with our national election and intends more of the same. That the Trump team encouraged and continues to encourage such interference is undeniable, a public reality. Mueller is the very definition of what it means to be a patriot, and yet we have these little Putins trying to pull him down and far too many who are complicit through their silence. America is under attack, and anyone who supports the diversionary ploys designed to make us look away from Mueller’s findings is contributing to America’s downfall. Adults would say that this isn’t about partisan politics, it’s about duty to country.

TwoToeJoe

Where are the adults? Watching yesterday’s hearings didn’t tell me anything that I didn’t already know. The Mueller Investigation was not initiated towards Russian interference as I stated before in a response. The testimony yesterday has explicated it as an attempt to manipulate the American people into believing Donald Trump conspired with a hostile foreign power in order to win the election. Anyone who loves America should look forward to the results of the investigations our Justice Department has begun that will expose how this political hoax began and prosecute the corruption to the fullest extent allowed by law. As far as the claim that public education provides unmatched success measures against non profit and private schools I would suggest using a little common sense. The non profit and private schools would be out of business overnight if that were true. Certainly those who profit and benefit from publicly funded schools would love to make that ridiculous claim. Given a choice most people would rather send their children to the best schools available rather than a bureaucracy driven mind control center that teaches what to think rather than how to think. Anyone who would make the absurd claim that the stock market "only bears a relationship to the wealthy and not everyday people" should be labeled as a tried and true "Marxist". Again common sense tells us when our stock market crashes the biggest losers are the every day working class. Capitalism creates employment and creates wealth for all those willing to take advantage of the opportunities it creates. It enables us to purchase the goods and services we need, raise our standard of living, and it provides revenue for our government to improve our infrastructure which most people are not only aware of but support. Marxism exerts it's power by controlling the means of production such as extolling extreme taxes on our labor, goods and services and attempts to redistribute revenue upon those who claim to be the victims of capitalism. It is the classic bait and switch scams we see each day such as the New Green Deal and carbon tax agendas which solves nothing and creates even more dilemmas and will cause all Americans to go bankrupt. I can only hope that these "appeal to the emotion" Marxist ideologies are not being pushed down our children's throats in our educational system.

Mike

Well, the hearings were certainly a disaster for all you Trump haters weren’t they? And by the way, judging from the date, the time and the content of Branson’s last two posts, it appears he was busy arguing when he could/should have been paying attention to the hearings.

Mike

Gilbert didn't watch the proceedings either, did he? Mueller Obviously didn't write the report bearing his name!

TwoToeJoe

Obviously Mr. Gilbert must have watched a different version. I did hear Robert Mueller respond with a lot of: "I can’t accept that characterization,” “I’m not going to speculate” “I stand by that which is in the report and not so to that which is not in the report” “I can’t speak to that” “It was outside my purview” and his response to the obvious question when he was specifically asked if “Russian meddling was outside your purview?”

Branson Hunter

One trump loyalist just commented, " Thanks to our great Constitution and the Bill of Rights... ." [end quote] However for months this individual continues to supports violating and denying all the fundamental procedural and substantive due process rights afforded immigrants AND children under the US Constitution. Now this individual supports "our great Constitution"? No you do not support the constitution, Immigration laws, the Code of Federal Regulations. This individual WANTS it both ways. No you don't... You can't have it both ways and claim credibility or having a firm foot on moral grounds. We have seen a malevolent leader who is an internationalist with true believers to the very last act of destroying our institutions and breaking the backs of the separations of powers. check out the Dallas News at the following link: https://ktla.com/2019/07/25/teen-u-s-citizen-wrongfully-detained-for-weeks-by-border-agents-says-he-lost-26-pounds-in-custody/

CookieG

A great idea. Change the discussion from the Mueller report to immigration issues. I thought the illegal immigration advocate had his own letter for comments. I guess he ran out of space for comments! Probably just a post comment submission error or someone has just given up hope since the collusion delusion has collapsed into a heaping pile of garbage!

Branson Hunter

A regular commenter yesterday suggested what is tantamount to favoring a repeal of the First Amendment which, if carried out, we will enshrine a paper-tiger Constitution. The commenter wrote: "Anyone who would make the absurd claim that the stock market "only bears a relationship to the wealthy and not everyday people" should be labeled as a tried and true "Marxist". [end quote] Is this our future. A Paper-Tiger constitution? Russian hackers now operating in all 50 state in order.

CookieG

Maybe we should consider deporting those russian hackers!

TwoToeJoe

That "regular commenter" never even remotely suggested a repeal of the first amendment. That "regular commenter" stated and I shall quote "Thanks to our great Constitution and the Bill of Rights we should thank all for exercising free speech and provide the fantastic discourse we see in these discussions!" That regular commenter also responded to someone's ridiculous "Marxist" claim that the stock market "only bears a relationship to the wealthy and not everyday people". Maybe I should be ashamed of myself for making these "extreme and obviously erroneous" comments as one well known and astute commenter observed and so stated. Is this our future?

Branson Hunter

Yes, the regular commenter does further meaningful discussions. The comment was made like this: "Thanks to our great Constitution and the Bill of Rights we should thank all for exercising free speech..." But the same commenter fully endorses the policy that violations protected constitutional rights of "person" in this country. The Constitution is applicable to "persons". And fundamental procedural and substantive due process extends to children and adults in deplorable holding facilities. The commenter ought not think he has it both ways. And why the puzzling dialectic discussion of Marxism? That big bad wolf was back in the 50s. Some voters may not like constitutional rights being extended to everyone physically in this country or the fact that it includes equal protection under the law. The Constitution has lasted 230 years so why are a minority so complace to reduce the constitution to class-based enforcement? That is not American. Not yet anyway.

TwoToeJoe

That "REGULAR COMMENTER" never even remotely suggested and I shall say again a "REPEAL of the FIRST AMMENDMENT" nor did I endorse any policy that violates the "CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS" of any person. I would suggest next time, instead of just fabricating and hurling totally false innuendos towards commenters such as me favoring a "REPEAL of the FIRST AMMENDMENT" and endorsing any "POLICY" that specifically violates anyone's "CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS" , use a few examples. At the very least utilize a little intellect and some constructive dialogue towards what you "PERCEIVE" to be a great threat to our Constitution. Besides it brings much more value and substance to a "meaningful discussion". I can understand your great frustration when rational thoughts and opinions gets in the way of your simple clichés. I shall repeat what I have already stated before in which you still ignore which is the definition of Marxism according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary: Definition of Marxism-: the political, economic, and social principles and policies advocated by Marx especially the theory and practice of SOCIALISM including the labor theory of value, dialectical materialism, the class struggle, and dictatorship of the proletariat until the establishment of a classless society. The big red scare in the fifties was COMMUNISM. I would suggest you stop repeating the false innuendos and dishonest interpretations toward what is specifically stated. That definitely is not "AMERICAN"! Most likely it is "LIBERALISM".

Branson Hunter

The commenter is thanked for the response. It is still puzzling that the constitution was expressed as being important to the commenter, but just not so important as applied to brown persons held in the US at borders. They don't teach this stuff in law school, and I have never come across it in my 20 years of legal research. There is no such thing as a class-applied enforcement. The Fourth and Fifth apply to all of us, even brown people held on US soil at the southern border. Using this logic, it is "tantamount" to repealing due process. Constructive your writings are okay with applying the constitution to some but not others at the lowest level of despair.

Branson Hunter

Oops, the above should read: "constructively"

TwoToeJoe

Thank you for your lack of response. I guess since that someone could not find and respond with any evidence of his false allegations that I supported a repeal of the first amendment nor supported any policy that violates the constitution he reverted to simply make more false assertions. Immigration laws are not written for "class applied" and specifically aimed at "brown" people at the US Border. Any person with at least a 7th grade education and a class in civics could figure that out and possible answers the question why you have never come across it in your fruitless 20 years of legal research. Certainly when some people who have sunk to the "lowest level of despair" have trouble with simple definitions it does seem to get in the way of "logic"!

Branson Hunter

Let's move on.

CookieG

A very wise decision indeed Branson.

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