ON MY BULLETIN BOARD

dreamcatcher

My dreamcatcher

I tack all kinds of stuff on my bulletin board—like appointment cards, prescriptions, mother’s day and birthday cards, a certificate placing my name on the Wall of Tolerance, and a story of the “dreamcatcher,” which came with my handmade charm. My dreamcatcher is a Native American (Chippewa Ojibwe) small willow hoop, entwined with a woven net or web. It includes tiny feathers and beads.

According to the story, the Ojibwe make dreamcatchers out of natural materials and hang them in their homes. They believe that the air is filled with both good and bad dreams and spirits. The good dreams and spirits take the path shown to them by the Great Spirit, through the center hole (of the web) to the people. The bad spirits, not having the knowledge, get trapped in the web where they perish in the light of dawn.” My dreamcatcher hangs by my front door and while writing this I checked to see that it is still there. It is.

Today, I removed a lot of things from my bulletin board to make room for a beautiful “Wonders of the World” calendar with various photos of those Wonders for each month. The calendar is a holiday gift from my granddaughter Nissa Beth.

One of the things that stayed on the board is a quote, which I especially like. It’s from a journalist for the Baltimore Evening Sun, H.L. Mencken (1880-1956); the quote is so apt today:

“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will reach their hearts’ desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.” A perfect description of Trump and his followers. (You knew I’d get to that somehow.)

Rather than using Trump’s name (he doesn’t need any more publicity), I will simply call him “Individual-1” as the recent court filings have identified him in the case against his former lawyer Michael Cohen. As I understand it, Individual-1 in the court document is a co-conspirator in the arrangement with Cohen to pay off two women with whom Individual-1 had sexual affairs. The payments were meant to silence the women so that the affairs would not have a negative affect on Individual-1’s presidential election campaign. Such payments are illegal if they are made to influence an election. However, if the payments were made for personal reasons, such as protecting a marriage, they are not covered by federal campaign finance law, thus would not be considered illegal.

Cohen declared in open court (where he was sentenced to three years in prison) that both payments were made to influence the election. So what happens to the co-conspirator? Why is he not named or indicted? According to Chuck Rosenberg, a former U.S. Attorney, a guidebook for U.S. attorneys says: “In all public filings and proceedings, federal prosecutors should remain sensitive to the privacy and reputation interests of uncharged third-parties…. in the absence of some significant justification, it is not appropriate to identify … a third-party wrongdoer unless that party has been officially charged with the misconduct at issue.”

Yet, it is no secret that Individual-1 is the guy who currently sits in the presidential office, except when he’s out golfing or out having a rally with “the plain folks of the land” who have reached “their hearts’ desire at last, and the White House [is] adorned by a downright moron.” Ah, Mr. Mencken we need many more of you to name Individual-1 what he is!

 

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