Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, August 18, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page B:3



 Mountain Views News Saturday, August 18, 2018 



Mountain Views



Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 


Joan Schmidt


LaQuetta Shamblee


Richard Garcia


Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 


Kevin Barry


Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Merri Jill Finstrom

Rev. James Snyder

Dr. Tina Paul

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Renee Quenell

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden


During the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump 
famously proclaimed he would drain the swamp in 
Washington. But looking at the cast of characters he’s 
surrounded himself with, it seems more like Trump invited 
all his carnivorous reptilian buddies to come drain their 
bladders in the swamp, and now it’s not only bigger but 
warmer as well.

 Mr. Art of the Deal’s career is littered with pyramid schemes, reneging on 
contracts, unpaid loans, phony foundations, phantom donations, broken promises, 
deceit, mendacity, moral turpitude and bad hair. He is a parody of avarice spreading 
a culture of corruption so large it can probably be seen from the Hubble Telescope.

Trump is the King of Corruption. The Maharajah of Malfeasance. Good God of 
Graft. Captain Crooked. The Pharaoh of Fraud. The Overlord of Venality. The 
creator and originator of Orange Collar Crime. Wouldn’t be surprised if he hadn’t 
trademarked that. His insatiable greed and con-man ways give rich people a bad 
name. Okay, a badder name. Boss Tweed had nothing on this Boss Tweet.

 You almost can’t blame his cronies. Once they ooze into the president’s orbit and 
see everyone else making money hand over fist, they figure they’d better get while 
the getting’s good. There’s only so much ripe low-hanging fruit. Not to mention 

 Forbes Magazine suggests Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross might have stolen 
upwards of $120 million and wrote that he could be “one of the biggest grifters 
in American history.” They also said he was a skinflint who’d pocket packets of 
Sweet’n Low in restaurants so he didn’t have to buy them. The kind of guy you see 
and discreetly lock up the silverware.

 One of his “best people,” former EPA Director Scott Pruitt was forced to resign 
after a series of scandals that pegged him as more crooked than a dumpster full of 
bent wire hangers.

 Like Health & Human Services Secretary Tom Price who also resigned under a 
cloud, Ryan Zinke, Secretary of Interior, loves to travel first class on the taxpayers’ 
dime and has left a trail of dodgy banking schemes in his wake. These guys are fast 
turning the swamp into a Jurassic Cesspool.

 The first congressman to endorse Trump, Christopher Collins, R-N.Y., was 
indicted for insider trading. Michael Cohen, the president’s fixer, is presently fixing 
to fix his fixee. Another early supporter, Duncan Hunter, is under FBI criminal 
investigation for using campaign funds for personal purposes. These guys are 
seriously threatening Nixon’s record for most Cabinet members perp- walked up 
a courthouse steps with a raincoat draped over their handcuffs. In one- third the 

 New York’s Attorney General is suing Trump and his three kids alleging the 
president used his foundation to benefit himself financially and politically. They 
also want him banned from running any charity in the state for 10 years for being 
reckless, unethical and just plain despicable.

 During court testimony, former administration official Rick Gates admitted 
not only to committing crimes at the behest of Trump’s campaign manager, Paul 
Manafort, but also stealing from him. Manafort allegedly stashed his stolen money 
in hidden offshore accounts. And both are reported to have stolen from Trump 
who steals from everyone. This administration is the Russian nesting dolls of 
crime. And there you go, another connection to Russia. Coincidence? You be the 


Will Durst is an award-winning, nationally acclaimed columnist, comic and former 
sod farmer in New Berlin, Wisconsin. For a calendar of personal appearances, 
including his new one-man show, “Durst Case Scenario,” please visit

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“Here we are in peak vacation season, but I’m afraid to take 
my paid vacation time off!”

 “Regrettably, you are not alone. According to the U.S. 
Travel Association, more than half of American workers 
aren’t using all of their vacation time. In its Project: Time Off report, the 
association found that nearly a quarter of Americans haven’t had a vacation in the 
past year - some 12 percent haven’t had a vacation in three years!”

 “You got that right. While some are enjoying fun in the sun, I’m logging long 
hours at the office to make sure the boss knows I’m doing a good job.”

 “You’re not alone there, either. According to CNBC, the association found 
that 61 percent of employees surveyed said they feared appearing replaceable to 
their bosses, while 56 percent said they can’t take a break because there is too 
much work on their plate. In the 1980s and 1990s, Americans averaged 20 days of 
vacation a year, now it’s down to 17 days a year.”

 “As bad as I am about taking vacation, the younger people in my office are even 
worse. They hardly take time off.”

 “It’s funny you say that, because the association found that older generations are 
more willing to use their vacation time than younger generations. Baby boomers 
take almost 20 days off a year, whereas millennials, often maligned as lazy, take 
fewer than 15 days of vacation each year. According to CNBC, this is partly because 
millennials have fewer vacation days, but also because they ‘are preoccupied by a 
host of worries, including heavy debt loads and career fulfillment.’”

 “Sometimes I wish I lived in Europe. Those cats know how to enjoy paid time 
off work!”

 “That is true. According to CBS News, workers in France are guaranteed at least 
five weeks of paid vacation, as well as a dozen public holidays and a maximum 35-
hour work week. Such policies may be why France’s economy is barely growing 
and why unemployment is hovering around 9 percent, but the French surely 
know how to vacation. Besides, many Americans prefer to work because it makes 
us happy.” 

 “It does?”

 “Sure! According to a report by the Journal of Happiness Studies, Americans 
believe hard work is associated with success. The harder we work and the more 
successful we become, the happier we become.”

 “With all due respect, I’d be happy with more leisure time. When I’ve taken 
vacations in the past, it really helped me recharge my batteries.” 

 “You speak the truth. The association found that people who enjoy true breaks 
are more creative and productive when they return to work.”

 “Maybe there should be a law forcing us to take time off!”

 “An interesting point. According to Forbes, the U.S. is the world’s only advanced 
economy that does not require employers to provide paid time off. Unlike France, 
I suppose, we prefer that free individuals negotiate their vacation time with their 

 “Whatever the case, my wife and I are not taking enough time off this year. It’s 
not just that we worry someone else may take our jobs. We also feel oddly guilty 
whenever we’re not working hard - as though we’d be breaking an unwritten law.”

 “You and the rest of America have to get beyond such silly guilt. Vacation is 
good for you!”

-Copyright 2018 Tom Purcell. Tom Purcell, author of “Misadventures of a 1970’s 
Childhood,” a humorous memoir available at, is a Pittsburgh Tribune-
Review humor columnist and is nationally syndicated Send comments to Tom at



What’s the mainstream liberal media’s most overblown Trump crisis of 
the week?

 First, it was the president’s tweet calling former staffer Omarosa 
Manigault Newman a “dog” for betraying him and his administration 
with her new book, “Unhinged,” and her stash of secret White House recordings.

 Then on Wednesday came the president’s revocation of the security clearance of John 
Brennan, Obama’s former CIA director and full-time Trump basher.

 From the liberal media’s reaction, you’d have thought President Trump had sentenced 
Brennan to death and declared himself dictator for life.

 The New York Times called it “a striking act of retaliation against an outspoken critic.” 

 Poor hysterical Andrea Mitchell of NBC, who pretended to worry that the president was 
“denying his own CIA ... access to the wise counsel of Brennan,” said the action was “akin to the 
Nixon enemies list.”

 Trump’s action was, as usual, pure Trumpian. Brennan definitely deserved to have his security 
clearance taken away. 

 Instead of acting like a respectable ex-government servant and keeping his partisan comments 
to himself, he’s been acting like a political hack or MSNBC talk show host.

After the Trump-Putin press conference in Helsinki, for example, Brennan tweeted that the 
president’s performance “rises to & exceeds the threshold of ‘high crimes & misdemeanors.’ It 
was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the 
pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???”

Other former Obama/Hillary partisans with security clearances who’ve been investigating 
or critiquing Trump and his staff are reportedly being considered for the same treatment - 
including James Clapper, James Comey and FBI super villains Peter Strzok, Lisa Page and Bruce 

 By the way, the whole security-clearance issue for former intelligence officials has been blown 
out of proportion by the media.

 There’s a long history of allowing the clearances for certain officials to continue from one 
administration to the next. It’s practical. It has worked. That’s why it was done.

 But in the past the officials from the previous administrations were not professional public 
enemies of the new president.

 Some people apparently think that Brennan and the other ex-Obama people with security 
clearances are able to just walk into their nearest federal building and start looking at top-secret 

 No, they can’t do that. They have to be invited by the current administration to come and look 
at material or give them advice based on their experiences or knowledge.

Even Mitchell knows there’s no way in hell the Trump administration is going to ask any of those 
Obama/Hillary partisans to come in to help.

 As usual, the president messed up. He managed to turn a decision he had every right to make 
into a vindictive political and personal act. If he’s going to pull security clearances on Obama 
alums, he should have done it on everyone at the same time and done it a long time ago.

 My problem with revoking the clearances is that once a president goes down this road, it’s 
bar-the-door Sally.

 We Republicans may all be happy and excited about what Trump did to Brennan, but one day 
were going to be angry and upset when a Democrat president does it to one of our guys.

 We obviously live in a different presidency today than ever before. Things are much different.

 Can anyone ever remember a former CIA director pointing a finger and speaking ill of a 
sitting president? Or a former president speaking ill of a sitting president?

This is the post-Trump world were living in now. We’ve lost complete respect for everything and 
everyone in Washington. 

 We’re now at a point where no one in D.C. works together. No one looks for common ground.

The reality is, while this is going on in D.C., the American economy is growing at 4.1 percent, 
unemployment is down dramatically and taxes and regulations have been cut.

What gets lost in the big media’s over-the-top coverage of petty D.C. beltway crap like the 
Omarosa tapes and revoked security clearances is that America is doing pretty great - again.


 Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan, a political consultant, and the author 
of “Lessons My Father Taught Me: The Strength, Integrity, and Faith of Ronald Reagan.” He is the 
founder of the email service and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Visit 
his websites at and Send comments to Reagan@ Follow @reaganworld on Twitter. 


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