Defending Civil Liberties in the Digital World Against Trump Threats

My friend, and super techno-geek, Jane, brought a magazine to the house and showed me an ad that had caught her attention. I thought it was interesting enough to comment on it here, at Calamity Politics. So, remember it is an advertisement, but the questions it brings up are noteworthy and in need of deeper political investigation and discussion. I will not be doing any research on the matter, and will assign that research task to my readers if they are interested. If a reader learns something interesting be sure to pass it on to us curious bystanders. To tell you the truth, I am so busy trying to keep up on the political news each day I barely have time to walk the dog.

This post was taken from an ad page by Electronic Frontier Foundation (  Although an ad, I thought the issue was serious enough to bring it to the attention of my friends and readers.

“Incoming President Donald Trump made campaign promises that, if carried out, threaten the free web and the rights of millions of people.  He has praised attempts to undermine digital security, supported mass surveillance, and threatened net neutrality.  He (Trump) promised to identify and deport millions of your friends and neighbors, track people based on their religious beliefs, and suppress freedom of the press.  And he (Trump) wants to use your servers (the technology community) to do it.”

EFF is “calling on the technology community to unite with EFF in securing our networks against this threat.

ENCRYPT:  Use HTTPS and end-to-end encryption for every user transaction, communication and activity by default.  DELETE:  Scrub your logs.  You cannot be made to surrender data you do not have.  REVEAL:  If you get a government request to monitor users or censor speech, tell the world.  RESIST:  Fight for user rights in court, on Capital Hill, and beyond. **(When you stand with users, EFF will stand with you).  EFF has fought for the rights of technology creators and users for 26 years, through four different presidential administrations.  As a nonpartisan nonprofit, we combine litigation, activism, and software development to defend civil liberties in the digital world.”

“Finally,  The future of our democracy depends on the Internet that is free from censorship and government surveillance.  Together we can ensure that technology created to connect and uplift people worldwide is not conscripted into a tool of oppression.”

Join the Resistance


Word Chain


By D.S. Mitchell

Political blogging requires mostly research and the desire to tell the world you have political ideas. Ideas you want to share with people. I try to provide discussion, analysis and relevant topics from current U.S. political news.

Sometimes, I like to play, so for this session here are a few word chains, related in some twisted way, to the current political situation. LOL.

I can change black to white, by changing one letter at a time:  black, blank, blink, clink, chink, chine, whine, white

I can change give to take, by changing one letter at a time: give, live, like, lake, take

I can change tears to smile, by changing one letter at a time: tears, scars, stars, stare, stale, stile, smile

I can change poor to rich, by changing one letter at a time: poor, boor, book, rook, rock, Rick, rich

I can change hate to love by changing one letter at a time: hate, rate, rave, cave, cove, love

Thank you Rod L Evans, Ph.D (taken directly from his book Tyrannosaurus Lex)

Fun and amazing, huh?

I wonder if Donald Trump can change treason to impeach by changing one letter at a time, or impeach to imprison?

Join the Resistance


The Perils of Indifference

The Perils of Indifference

By D. Mitchell

Elie Wiesel, teacher, writer, philosopher and Auschwitz death camp survivor, said in a speech before the US Congress in 1999, “indifference can be tempting-more than that, seductive.  It is much easier to look away from victims.  It is after all, awkward and troublesome to be involved in another person’s pain and despair.”

Furthermore, “to be indifferent to that suffering makes the human being, inhuman.  Indifference is always the friend of the enemy, for it benefits the aggressor-never the victim, whose pain is magnified when he or she feels forgotten.  The political prisoner, the starving children, the homeless refugees-not to respond to their plight, not to relieve their solitude by offering them a spark of hope is to exile them from human memory.  And in denying their humanity, we betray our own.  Indifference, then, is not only a sin, it is a punishment.  Where I came from, society was composed of three simple categories: the killers, the victims, and the bystanders.”

Today’s “bystanders,” want to look away from the victims, to look anywhere but in the direction of the suffering.

“I’m a good person,” President Trump said last week during a news conference.   A man with a heart, he tells us.  Why then Mr. President do you ignore the plight of the Syrian refugees?   The plight of these children is horrific.  We have all seen television clips of bloodied, crying and even dead Syrian children.  I have seen their pain.  I have heard their pleas.

Preisent Trump, are you listening, are you seeing, or are you just another bystander?

We are the wealthiest country on earth and home of the most generous people on earth and our basic instinct is to help, not turn away.  The American people want to help the world absorb the displaced refugees of Syria.

Give hope to those 1200 refugees currently housed by Australia.  Come on President Trump, don’t continue to look away, show your heart, show that “goodness” you were bragging about.

Join the Resistance


25 Things To Make You Smile

25 Things To Make You Smile

By D.S. Mitchell

I am back at the computer making my second post to my Calamity Politics blog, today.  Before I started this blog, I worried that I wouldn’t have enough to scream about, but I’m finding that I could probably do half a dozen posts a day related to the Trump Administration, and its basket of corruption.  But I thought, before I start my rant on the collapse of the progressive agenda. I should deliver something positive and uplifting.

So, here are twenty-five things to make you smile:

1.) Touching toes in the sand
2.) Sunsets over water
3.) Wraparound sunglasses
4.) The Science channel
5.) Kite flying contests
6.) The Muppets
7.) Astronauts

8.) Blowing the wrapper off the straw
9.) Winning at Monopoly
10.) A dog’s cold nose on your hand
11.) Barhopping
12.)  Old jeans that fit just right
13.) Your lover’s voice
14.) The clatter of skis being loaded
15.) The rumble of a train as it passes
16.) Walking in the rain
17.) The imagination of a six year old
18.) Margaritas at midnight

19.) Finishing the Sunday crossword without cheating
20.) Volunteer
21.) The smell of a new car
22.) Roller skating
23.) First grade teacher
24.) A good book
25.) Dad’s wisdom

I know this Sunday distraction did little to take your mind off the continuing chaos in the Trump White House, but if it gave you a couple minutes respite, that’s a good thing. Have a gem of a day.

Join the Resistance


Bannon Blocks Out the Light at C-PAC 2017

Bannon Blocks Out The Light At C-Pac 2017

By D. S. Mitchell

Steve Bannon is that dark shadow behind President Trump. We, here in the blogosphere, probably will never know the depth of Bannon’s impact on the President’s policy development, but he is a noted white supremacist, a chaos creator, a “de-constructor,” and former owner of Breitbart, the right wing conspiracy theory rag.

Calamity Politics has been watching Mr. Bannon. Bannon is big on the political news scene right now. However, there isn’t anything I’ve seen yet, that has in anyway, convinced me this man should even be allowed close to the seat of power. I don’t want this guy influencing ANYTHING related to the United States government.

Government is about stability. People depend on stability. People depend on government service. My analysis of Bannon from a purely political stand point, is get rid of this guys ASAP. Bannon will do everything within his power to push Trump to the farthest corner of the right political hemisphere and will argue for de-funding departments, cutting services, building walls, and instituting Muslim bans. Furthermore, I believe in the current political environment in the United States anyone could successfully argue that Bannon will agitate any situation he is involved in.

This week’s annual C-PAC meet has been a head shaker.

It is obviously time for these folks to rethink their name.  Looking at the  speakers list and the political direction they are advocating, its obvious that conservatism is dead in the Trump Party.  They should plan a funeral and bury that tattered old conservative label.  Truthfully, I’ve never seen a bigger collection of mega-spenders in my life.  Throw out the budget, throw out taxes, throw out regulations!  Let the robber barons ride again!

Mr. Bannon, eulogized the current world order. Bannon proclaimed it was going to be a “daily fight” with the press, identified as the “opposition.”  His rhetoric brought cheers and foot stomping from a friendly crowd.  With the crowd hanging on every word, he dazzled them with a series of big words. The most striking to my ears, was when he said,  “deconstruct the administrative state.”  “Administrative state?”  The “administrative state?”  Wow, that’s scary.  How did we let such a thing happen? What are we going to do?

No, worries, Bannon cajoles the C-PAC attendees, “Trump is maniacal.”  That of course drew a huge round of applause.  Strange, very, very, strange.

I’m still chewing on Steve Bannon’s “deconstruct the administrative state.”   Wait a minute.  Is he advocating deconstruction of the government?  Well, hell yeah, that’s what we ought to do!  Deconstruct the government.

Holy shit!  How far do they intend to “deconstruct”?  Until we are another, Mogadishu?  The biggest outlaw bully winning every round? Sounds scary as hell, to me.

I object, and I will continue to object.  One of the reasons we have the exceptional life we have in the United States, is because of government.  We need the stability that government provides.  Get real folks, we should be embracing government.

Government IS NOT a dirty word.   Government is our roads, government is our schools, government is our postal service, government is our fire fighters, government is our policemen.   We need to protect these benefits of a civilized society.  We need to build, not deconstruct.

Join the Resistance


Yoda Speaks To Steve Bannon

Yoda Speaks To Steve Bannon

By D. S. Mitchell


It’s been a long time since I took my young son, and stood in a very long line to see the first “Star Wars” movie, in 1977.  After, seeing it, I had to admit the movie did a good job of promoting solid basic values. I never thought, writing a political blog, would bring me back to that great movie series that has kept entertaining, educating and captivating young people for 4 decades.

There’s a lot going on in U.S. politics and today rather than do a political analysis of the current events cycle I am going to let Yoda speak quietly to Steve Bannon and let his wisdom be my political comment of the day.

You know, that weird-looking guy you see schlumping around in the background at Trump functions?  The one that looks like he slept in the subway.  You know who I mean?  The guy that’s the real president of the United States.  Anyway, President Bannon, told the NY Times that he likens himself to the “dark force of Star Wars”.  In fact, “all my friends call me Darth.   Darkness is good.  Dick Cheney.  Darth Vader.  Satan.  That’s power.”

Yoda, warns Bannon is wrong, very, very wrong. The legendary Jedi Master, from the movie series is very wise and extremely powerful.  He is small but stronger than most due to his intense connection to the Force. He trained Jedi Knight for over 800 years, and unlocked the path to immortality.

His message to Steve Bannon is, “No, no, no.  Quicker, easier, more seductive, but not stronger.  Fear is the path to the dark side…fear leads to anger…anger leads to hate…hate leads to suffering.”

Join the Resistance

Merkley Method Sets a Fire

Merkley Method Sets A Fire

By D. S. Mitchell


Another day in paradise, truly. When you are fortunate enough to live on the Oregon coast you have reached Valhalla. Thank God, there’s only a few of us here. Many advantages for a writer. Quiet, incredible beauty and very little political discussion in my little corner of the United States.

Lifetime Of Writing

The foundation of Calamity News and Politics/Calamity Politics began the evening of November 8, 2016. I have been a writer since childhood. I have been writing the great American novel for the last decade. So, writing a blog, seemed a natural response to this devastating event.  November 8, 2016 as everyone knows was the night misogynist and white supremacist Donald Trump won the presidential election. I have never had such a visceral reaction to a U.S. presidential election in my life.

Physically sick

I became physically sick watching the returns flow in. Devastating to any progressive person. Truly, not just the progressive but, most citizens of the United States. If you are on Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, ACA, need VA services, if you are a person of color, if you want clean drink water to drink, or want clean air to breath, President Trump’s extreme right-wing agenda will most likely have a negative effect on your daily life, and the quality of that life.

Continue reading

Russian Flags Over the White House

Russian Flags Over The White House

By D. S. Mitchell

A Fitful Sleep

I went to bed and fell asleep with the TV on.  Something that I have done a lot of recently. I slept fitfully while the station played.  Dream and nightmare merged as I flopped to and fro. Visions of red, white, and blue, twisted weirdly on a brisk breeze over the White House.  But in my confused sleep, I knew something was wrong.  Something was very wrong.


In my sleep, I couldn’t make sense of it.  What the fuck?  Why does the flag look so strange?  Where are the stars?  OMG.  The stripes aren’t the stripes of My flag, and My country.  The flag flying over this White House, is the tri-stripe red, white, and blue of Russia.

Joe and Mika

My eyes flew open.  Joe and Mika were talking with the usual crowd at the “Morning Joe” conference table about the General Mike Flynn resignation.  I shook my head. The rest of the Morning Joe story centered on Trump Campaign officials having been in “continuous” contact with Russian officials throughout the 2016 Presidential campaign. No wonder I’m having nightmares.

A Smoldering Fire

I know there is a lot of political wrangling going on in the Congress. Democrats smell a Russian fire smoldering behind the doors of the White House, but there is denial.  The Trump Administration continues to deny Russian interference in the 2016 election. The Republicans, current in control of House, Senate and the Executive Branch are in the middle of an election high and refuse to see the Russian fire.

Smoke Screen

It looks as if the Democrats and the voters are the only way to make our Republican brothers and sisters see the danger for what damage such a potential blaze could do. The main stream press, CNN and MSNBC  and the on-line news sources are screaming bloody murder, but the GOP have blinders and ear plugs in place. Every one outside the Republican sphere is calling 911  but are getting no answer. Right now the Republicans are drunk with power and can’t see the fire for the smoke.

Join the resistance.


8 Donald Trump Mind Benders

8 Donald Trump Mind Benders

By D. S. Mitchell

Face Slamming

For me, staying on track, with so many political news stories slamming me in the face, seemingly every minute, is a bit hard. My primary intention with Calamity News and Politics/Calamity Politics, is to be a voice for the progressive political agenda. I believe everything is political, so you will see articles on health care, housing, homelessness, suicide, struggling families, criminal ‘injustice’, and the overall inequality of our existing system. I hope to do that through sensible reporting, comment, opinion and conversation.


Although, my agenda is progressive, I want to stay as objective as the facts allow me to be. I attempt to use a minimum of two sources for each story. I know my personality, so I expect I am likely to drop a commentary bomb somewhere in almost every post. However, my goal is to give you news. When writing an Editorial, however, I am more likely to go on a screaming tirade.


I will do my best to restrain those outbursts when posting my regular posts.  If you want to watch me eviscerate the powerful, look for posts labeled Editorial.  If I deviate from that set goal, I give my readers permission to remind me of my shortcomings. My central goal is to empower the powerless, encourage the weak and motivate the involvement of the many. When you read Calamity News and Politics it is the same as reading Calamity Politics, you just got to the site using a different URL. I am on Twitter, but find I do not have the energy it requires to be as visible as I would like.  I hate Facebook. Because of that bias I am there only by social media arm twisting. Lastly, you can find CP posts on Pinterest.

Continue reading

What Was the Value of Your 2016 Vote?

The Value Of Your 2016 Vote

D. S. Mitchell

On High Heat

My head just keeps spinning. In case no one has noticed the political discussion in the United States has become so heated between opposing factions that I am hearing of divorces and office fights over the 2016 election results. Really? So, just for fun, I played with some numbers and I thought I might light a political fire under my readers. It’s seat of the pants mathematics but, it seems that more than one person is operating by the seat of their pants. American politics at its most outrageous.

Upside Down

How much was your vote worth in 2016. You probably already figured out, not much; if you voted, for Hillary Clinton. Hillary WON the popular vote by 2,865,075.  Everyone knows that, right? Trump WON the Electoral College with 304 electoral votes.  That’s old news, right? Looking behind those numbers we discover that:  112,155 votes, cast in three states (Michigan 13,104, Wisconsin 27,257, and Pennsylvania 71,794) turned my world, and maybe yours, upside down.

Electoral College Math

WHEN IS 112,155 EQUAL TO 2,865,075?They are equal if you are using Electoral College math.  Every single one of those 112,155 “rust belt” votes, equaled 25.55 votes, cast elsewhere.   In other words, 1 vote in Pennsylvania is equal to 25.55 votes in Oregon.  In my opinion, absolute insanity.

Continue reading