A Little Bit of This, A Little Bit of That
Greetings, Dear Reader. It’s close to midafternoon here in New Hometown, Florida on Sunday, February 14, 2021. Currently, the temperature is 82˚F (28˚C) under sunny skies; with humidity at 62% and the wind blowing from the southwest at 19 MPH (31 KM/H) the feels-like temperature is 85˚F (30˚C). Today’s forecast calls for thunderstorms to pass through our area and a high of 80˚F (27˚C) – which has been exceeded – this afternoon. Tonight, we can expect partly cloudy skies and a low of 69˚F (20˚C).
Well, folks, if you’ve been watching or reading the news from the United States, the second impeachment of former President Donald Trump went the way most people expected it to; the House managers – aka the prosecution – made a convincing case for putting Trump on trial for inciting the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol in a desperate last bid to hold on to the White House. The defense argued – unconvincingly, in my view – that Trump’s January 6 speech to his supporters may have contained bellicose rhetoric, but it could not be viewed as inciting insurrection. And the defense also stuck to its position that the impeachment was unconstitutional because Trump was no longer President and that it was overreach by the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives.
It’s clear now – just as it was clear before the trial in the Senate began last Tuesday – that there was no way that 17 GOP Senators would break from their steadfast loyalty to the former President, who still holds a great deal of clout in the Republican Party. Seven Senators did, of course, put country over party and voted to convict, but most of the GOP Senators stuck to the party line that the whole thing was unconstitutional because Trump was no longer in the Oval Office, yada yada yada.
The hardest pill for me to swallow wasn’t knowing that Trump, yet again, had been saved by the Republican Senators who voted to acquit. I suspected that would be the likely outcome even before the trial began; then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) refused to call the Senate for an emergency session while Trump was still President so he could be tried before January 20. McConnell might have been angry with the former Golfer-in-Chief over the MAGA Mob’s insurrection, but he also had zero desire to give the Democrats a historic victory (and a Senate trial with a conviction surely would have amounted to one).
What bugs me the most about McConnell’s political Machiavellianism isn’t merely how he short-circuited the impeachment process and doomed it to its expected failure. That’s part of it, but the worst aspect was the statement that McConnell made late on Saturday:
Minutes after voting “not guilty” in Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the former president is clearly to blame for the deadly Capitol riot.
“There’s no question” that Trump “is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day,” McConnell said just after the Senate acquitted Trump of inciting the attack. “No question about it.”
But “the question is moot,” McConnell said, because as a former president, “Trump is constitutionally not eligible for conviction.”
“After intense reflection, I believe the best constitutional reading shows that Article 2 Section 4 exhausts
the set of persons who can legitimately be impeached, tried or convicted,” McConnell said.
“It’s the president, it’s the vice president, and civil officers. We have no power to convict a former office holder who is now a private citizen,” he said.
The article, by Kevin Breuninger, also says McConnell defended his stance by pointing out that Trump’s acquittal in the Senate does not mean the former President can rest easy, since he is now vulnerable to prosecution in both criminal and civil courts:
“He didn’t get away with anything, yet,” McConnell said, noting that “we have a criminal justice system in this country. We have civil litigation. And former presidents are not immune from being [held] accountable by either one.”
McConnell, who has previously stated that Trump provoked the mob of his supporters who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, also pushed back on some of the arguments made by Trump’s defense team during the trial.
“The issue is not only the president’s intemperate language on January 6th,” McConnell said, but “also the entire manufactured atmosphere of looming catastrophe,” including “the increasingly wild myths of a landslide election that was somehow being stolen.”
Whatevs, “Moscow Mitch.”
Valentine’s Day: 10 Favorite Romantic Compositions/Love Songs
Tossing Trump and politics aside…..
Today is my first Valentine’s Day as a single – and dateless – person since late 2015, so I am not doing the whole “happy in love” routine. I paid for the last book – The World of Star Trek – and 4K UHD set – The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy – that I ordered from Amazon with money I would have normally spent on gifts for my now-ex girlfriend, so I got some balm for the emotional wounds caused by the breakup via “Shopping Therapy.” (I could also add my pre-orders of the Hemingway and Baseball Blu-rays to that, but I would have gotten ordered those regardless.)
Still, I still have quite a bit of Romanticism in me, and I still have an affinity for love songs or orchestral works which evoke love, passion, or romance.
So without further ado, here are my 10 Favorite Romantic Compositions/Love Songs:
- Love Theme from Superman (John Williams)
2. “Some Enchanted Evening” from South Pacific (Richard Rodgers & Oscar Hammerstein III)
3. “Un Bal” (“A Ball”) – Movement No.2, Symphonie Fantastique, Opus 14 in C-minor (Hector Berlioz)
4. The Way You Look Tonight (Jerome Kern)
5. Just the Way You Are (Billy Joel)
6. Han Solo and the Princess (Love Theme from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back) (John Williams)
7. I Will Wait for You from The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (Michel Legrand)
8. The Summer Knows/Love Theme from Summer of ’42 (Michel Legrand)
9. Perhaps Love (John Denver)
10. Annie’s Song (John Denver)
Bonus Song: As Time Goes By (Herman Hupfeld)