Warning and when agreeing to disagree doesn’t work

Left Wisdom
6 min readDec 26, 2019

Three days ago, I wrote my first article about the book A Warning. At that point, I had only read the first 100 plus pages of the 259 page book. Now that I have finished it, I am writing my reaction to the remainder of the book. The first part was the authors assessment of trump’s character and moral fitness. I found nothing in that part to disagree with. trump was presented, honestly in my opinion, as a lover of dictators and to have a very small concern, if any, about truth.

The rest of the book, however, is about what we should do as a nation about this appalling situation. Here is where I think the author has some points but implementing them is actually likely to be counter-productive.

It is suggested that both sides need to look at the situation and evualate how we got here, and decide how we want to go about recovery. The assertion is that both sides can come together and find a way to get beyond this horrible, which the author readily admits we are currently in, situation. However, there are some problems with his solution.

First of all, he suggests that the Democrats need to pick a candidate that is in the center. Well, that might be hard because Bernie Sanders, for example, has been very popular with a large group of the younger people. These are the very people who know the most about the bad deck of cards that has been dealt to them by the current economic situation. They are the ones with the huge debt caused by educational costs and the fact that there are such hight health costs.

The current Republican party, meantime, wants to do away with what was at least a start on a health care bottom, the ACA. Which should be amended as needed to make sure that everybody in the nation has decent access to health care that doesn’t bankrupt them and prevent them from having a decent chance at being productive members of society.

Meanwhile, any party that condones, or goes along with a person in the White House who advocates and follows though on ripping children out of the arms of their parents and putting them in cages (as the author admits trump has done) is not one that is likely to be able to compromise or do what is right without strong resistance. In addition the LGBTQ community has come under attack as well, and that is my home base.

The author’s words sound good, but I disagree on a number of issues. First of all, the group of “adults in the room” should have en mass resigned and told the country why. I understand that they decided that the better course was to subtly fight his worst instincts. However, obviously that hasn’t worked out. In fact, it was counter-productive because Mattis and Tillerson may have traveled to countries that trump had attacked verbally and on twitter to assure them that the United States was going to honor its commitment, but that resulted in Tillerson and Mattis being fired. Then a true trump-enabler took over the job. So our relationships with our allies got worse and less likely to continue rather than improving.

Where the author would seem to be right is that we are in dangerous times right now. trump will likely react badly in the case of impeachment being followed up with a guilty verdict, not that the republicans are likely to show that much honesty and independence. The same thing may happen if trump loses the election in 2020. He, and his most adamant supporters may engage in a process or riling the masses and starting a “civil war”. I have already read comments where people are encouraging violence against those of us crying out against the trump administration.

However, that being said, I think the Democratic party needs to run their campaign based on what is good for the country. We know that the Republicans support giving tax breaks to the richest of the rich, ie the elite. They also seem to continue to support lesser status for the LGBTQ community as well as other minorities. Those are not positions that the Democrats or the nation as a whole needs to support and agree with just in order to prevent a small group of White Nationalists and the sympathizers to hold the country for hostage.

Economic issues are MORE important now because the days of people being able to find and keep two or three jobs just to survive are getting less likely as automatic advances. We can, frankly, no longer afford the old economic policies of rewarding those who already have a huge share of the wealth on the backs of those who are struggling.

Now, I am a pragmatist. I understand that nobody is perfect and my biggest concern about those who were so tied to Bernie Sanders in 2016 could or would not compromise and accept that Hillary was the best we were going to do. I supported Bernie in the primary but switch over to Hillary in the general election because that was, obviously, the best we were going to get. By the way, I am far less optimistic about a third party candidate winning a national election that the author seems to be. To date, all that a third party candidate has done is split one of the other two parties vote.

Now for an explanation of the title of this blog. First of all, the book title should be obvious. However one of the right wingers (one who claims he is not, but is more right wing than many others that do claim that title), once responded to my agreement to “agree to disagree” by telling me that they refused to do so. I thought at the time, and still do, that it wasn’t up to them to determine that. The implication was that somehow unless I agreed with him, I was to be ignored or in this particular case, rejected as a person with cussing and ranting. Obviously that person is banned from any post that I am in charge of.

I don’t like “corporate democrats” but will vote for them over against someone like trump representing a party that has sold their soul for power. Although I disagreed with much of what they did, even someone like W Bush is now a breath of fresh air compared to the situation we are in now. I remember his speech after 9–11 and it was unifying to the nation. We came together, anger but determined that we wouldn’t let terrorists destroy our country.

It is sad, even to me as a democrat to see the republican party cover for a man who loves conspiracy theories and apparently hates democratic governments like France and Canada while loving dictatorships like Russia and North Korea. Bullying, which is what trump does to other countries is not a way to encourage friendships.

Where did the GOP go wrong and how did the nation go along with it?

By the way, I am open to any former trump supporter who sees that maybe they made a wrong choice. What I can’’t simply let go is one who continues to say that his horrible attacks on democracies and former allies, and getting cosy with dictatorships, especially one that interfered in our election process and his attacks on the free press and so forth are ok. On the personal level i can agree to disagree (and just not talk politics), however, on the political level, that is a mindset that I have to fight and reject.

Will there be violence? Only if one side or the other insists on it. And right now, my bet is on the trump supporters insisting, based on the little I have been able to bring myself to read in right wing media. But that doesn’t mean that I believe the rest of us should lie down and not push for what we feel is best of us and future generations. That would be being complicit in the destruction of our once great nation, in my not so humble view.



Left Wisdom

70 and retired, and living my dream free, knowing that only by working with a union am I fortunate enough to be able to be where I am.