Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, October 3, 2020

MVNews this week:  Page 12



 Mountain Views News Saturday, October 3, 2020 



Maybe, but not by me

 This morning very early I received a 
telephone call from my son. He is an adult 
disabled male with severe learning difficulties. 
As he grew up I was pretty certain that he would 
never be able to live independently. When my 
new house was being built it was designed 
to have a back entrance that would allow my 
son to come and go with some privacy and 
independence. Remarkably, he has never had 
to use that entrance as he, through his own very 
hard work, has managed to live independently. 
His life has had its ups and downs but, on the whole, he is just as happy or 
just as miserable, as everyone else. After the age of six he lived with me 
as his single parent. Soon my daughter joined us and we lived as a single 
parent family together with our dog. 

 My deficiencies as a parent are pretty obvious to anyone who knows 
me. I am terribly disorganized, lack almost all domestic skills, had absolutely 
no experience in parenting, and was a working lawyer with little extra time. 
Somehow the kids and I managed to eat and do our laundry and pay our 
bills. During the schoolyear we had limited outings like going personally 
to pay our utility bills and to the bank because I never liked using the 
ATM. For me every possible interchange with another person represented 
a possible expansion of a pretty isolated life. We were regular customers at 
Robin’s Restaurant and got to know Robin so well that my name was placed 
on the menu. Of course what I thought was isolated then is laughable when 
measured against the forced isolation required by today’s Covid virus rules. 
What I could do then was listen, answer questions, and explain. 

 It was my son’s acceptance of rules that allowed him to develop enough 
confidence and skill to lead the life that he does. He is always punctual, 
always remembers to take his multiple medications each day and amazingly 
has learned to make good friends wherever he has lived. He has learned to 
rely on people he trusts to explain situations that he does not understand. 
If I had any strength, whatsoever as a parent, it was my willingness and my 
ability to take the time necessary to explain things to him. While he was 
growing up he thought I was pretty smart and could explain most things 
to him. This morning when he called, he was troubled from watching the 
Trump-Biden “debate”. “AREN’T THERE ANY RULES”? AREN’T WE 
SUPPOSED TO BE A GOOD COUNTRY?” he simply asked. 

 All day I have pondered the question and have decided that the 
answer is not simply that the President is much like a willful undisciplined 
child. I now believe that by breaking all the rules and refusing to listen to 
anyone, Trump is demonstrating to his supporters and to himself that he is 
bigger and more powerful than any combination of ordinary weak-willed 
politicians. Those are the Democrats who wish to take away from deserving 
people all that they have worked for and value: their guns, their religion, 
their pride in self-reliance. They want to give everything away to the 
undeserving irresponsible losers of America. Many people actually believe 
that a kind of reverse discrimination exists and that it is the hard-working 
responsible segments (white people) who suffer from this discrimination. 
Better it is for Trump to appear as a powerful bully who cannot be restrained 
and like any other comic Super-Hero will in the end prevail and save the 
good people from humiliation and despair.

 I think, given the silliness of this view the last thing Trump or his 
campaign managers would want is a civilized debate. I am sure he would be 
quite happy if the remaining two debates were postponed. Why don’t the 
Democrats understand? I wish I could explain. 




Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 



Stuart Tolchin 

Audrey Swanson

Mary Lou Caldwell

Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Lori Ann Harris

Rev. James Snyder

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Jeff Brown

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden

Rebecca Wright

Hail Hamilton

Joan Schmidt

LaQuetta Shamblee

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President Trump was his own worst enemy at Tuesday night’s 
big debate.

As we’ve said here a dozen times, he still hasn’t learned when 
to shut up. He stepped on his own message dozens of times 
and interrupted Joe Biden so often and so quickly that Old 
Joe never had the chance to hang himself with his damning 
or garbled answers.

We didn’t need to hear Trump tell us what he thinks about 
rebuilding the post-COVID-19 economy or what an idiot the mayor of Portland is.

We’ve seen and heard that noise a hundred times. Every day, it seems.

What the country needed to see more of, however, was Basement Joe Biden. He was 
the mystery candidate who needed to reveal himself and his ideas to us.

I wanted Biden to have plenty of time at the debate to show us just how out of it he is 
and how unprepared he is to be president.

I wanted the whole country to see him try to defend the New Green Deal and his $4 
trillion tax hike and tell us if he’s in favor of packing the U.S. Supreme Court with 
more Democrats.

What I and the rest of the world got instead at the debate was an aggressive, ill-prepared 
and un-presidential president who forgot he was a contestant and thought he 
was the co-moderator.

It was so frustrating to see him cut in so often that at one point I was shouting at the 
TV, “Shut the hell up, Trump! Let Joe go off the rails!”

I’m sure I wasn’t the only frustrated Republican screaming at their TV on Tuesday 

If Trump really wants to spare the Free World the horrors of a President Biden, he’d 
better learn a few things before the next debate or town hall.

First off, he needs to concentrate on saying “we” more often than “I.”

He also needs to learn how to listen to the moderator’s question or Biden’s answer, 
respond to it, and turn it back to his advantage.

The two idiots who helped Trump prepare for the debate — Chris Christy and Rudy 
Giuliani – obviously didn’t stress that smart tactic.

Those two were terrible choices, by the way. Both are failed presidential candidates. 
Both are attack dogs, not debate coaches.

I talked to half a dozen conservatives on Wednesday and we all came up with better 
answers than Trump gave to the questions that Christy, Giuliani and Baron Trump 
knew the president would have to answer.

For example, when asked about reports he paid only $750 in federal income tax in 
two recent years, Trump should have had this answer memorized:

“Yes, Chris. I paid $750 for two years, but in previous years I paid tens of millions in 
income tax. I’m a businessman. And the reason I could pay only $750 was I was able 
to take advantage of the tax laws that Joe Biden and Barack Obama put together a 
decade ago. But I didn’t break the law. And by the way, 60 other huge companies used 
the same laws to pay no taxes, including Chevron and Amazon.”

If Trump wanted to turn the tables and take a jab at Biden, he could have added, “Joe, 
I bet Hunter used those same laws to lower the taxes on that three and half million 
dollars he got from the mayor of Moscow.”

Humor is a powerful weapon in debates, as my dad knew. Next time, the president 
also needs to lighten up and use the same sense of humor he displays at his rallies.

Most important, though, he has to learn to listen more and talk less. My mother 
taught me a long time ago to be a good listener and I put it to good use during my 
talk radio career.

For his next debate, maybe President Trump should have Tucker Carlson prepare him 
instead of Christy and Giuliani.


Because Tucker knows how to do it. He asks tough questions. He doesn’t interrupt his 
guests. And he’s a great listener.

 Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan, a political consultant, and author. 

Karma (noun): The sum of a person’s actions decide that 
person’s fate…The intent and actions of an individual influence 
the future of that individual.

And so it has happened. Trump testing positive for the 
coronavirus – four weeks before the election, no less – certainly 
looks like the ultimate October surprise. But when 
we consider his long string of actions (or, more precisely, 
his lack of action), it doesn’t seem surprising at all.

We are the sum of the choices we make. We are condemned to consequences. 
Or, as Clint Eastwood said in his film Unforgiven, “We all have it coming, 

Forgive me for sounding heartless about Trump’s health, but by dint of his 
reckless behavior, he’s long had it coming.

Earlier this week, at the debate he desecrated, Trump mocked Joe Biden’s 
safety regimen.

“I don’t wear masks like him. Every time you see him, he’s got a mask. He 
could be speaking 200 feet away from (people), and he shows up with the biggest 
mask I’ve ever seen,” Trump said.

Just a few weeks ago, Trump staged a maskless super-spreader rally in Pennsylvania, 
where all the saps joined in laughter as he mocked Biden again.

“Did you ever see a man that likes a mask as much as him? It gives him a 
feeling of security. If I was a psychiatrist, I’d say this guy has some big issues,” 
Trump said.

And so on. No need here to recap the quack’s shameless rhetorical record – 
about how the virus would disappear like a miracle, about how he’s smarter 
than the scientists, yadda yadda – because the big question is: What happens 

How will the markets react? If Trump is in quarantine for days or weeks, does 
that put the kibosh on the remaining debates (or move them to Zoom)? If 
he becomes symptomatic or worse – if he becomes too ill even to tweet – at 
what point would he be compelled to temporarily relinquish power, and who 
makes that call? The 25th Amendment allows Trump to cede control to Mike 
Pence (who just tested negative), but to reclaim his crown when he’s deemed 
able, but who’d make that call?

Or perhaps we’re getting too far ahead of ourselves. All we know right now is 
that an incumbent who’s on the ballot four weeks hence – an obese 74-year-
old in the highest risk category, with a history of mystery visits to Walter Reed 
–has been infected with a killer disease after sowing irresponsibility among
his cultists and turning the White House into a Petri dish. In what remains 
of this unprecedented presidential, there’s no other issue now. The blood of 
208,000 dead Americans is on his hands – as well as his own.

“Out, damned spot! Out, I say!” cried Lady MacBeth. Oh well, too late.

Yes, I am offering thoughts and prayers for Trump’s health. Nobody should 
have such a disease. But right now I’m more concerned about whether the 
COVID poster child’s 90-minute spittle-yelling put Joe Biden in any danger.

The future of this benighted nation may hinge on that.

Dick Polman, a veteran national political columnist based in Philadelphia and 
a Writer in Residence at the University of Pennsylvania, writes at DickPolman.
net. Email him at

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