Encore of Revival: America, March 19, 2018

General Michael Flynn has earned a purple heart. The corruption against him indicated by text messages is scandalous. The public will rally to his defense more and more.

Trump allows Mueller to continue, indicating strength not weakness. Trump is letting Mueller proverbially “hang himself”, or to be “Biblical”, build his own Haman scaffold. Lashing out at Mueller on Twitter comes from Trump’s “social nose” telling him to wait for public support so that when—not if—Trump fies Mueller, the public demands more investigations of the draining swamp, which still will not satisfy the public outcry against corruption.

By not yet taking so much action as demanded, Trump opponents will see him as moderate and his support could even increase in the 2020 election—already likely to increase since the normal mid-term losses long predicted by Symphony will only rouse Trumpists to get out the vote even more.

The Facebook scandal involving the said-to-be-dubious research group Cambridge Analytica neither indites Democrats nor Republicans since the group is likened to “mercenaries” who will work for anyone’s pay. It does raise questions about Facebook’s inside baseball, though at most Facebook’s involvement seems to have been not caring enough or not having policies prepared to handle what Cambridge Analytica was doing, but we’ll have to wait and see. Nonetheless, Facebook will end up being more regulated by Congress, something quite easily done through FTC regulations—Facebook is a company with publicly traded stock. We could see legislation imposing a kind of “fairness and privacy doctrine” on public social media companies. Facebook is becoming a de facto utility, a status clearly proven by how important it was to Cambridge Analytica.

The STOP, School Violence Act of 2018 sponsored by Orrin Hatch has due bipartisan support. It also contains provisions for training, something suggested by Symphony just after the Florida Valentine’s Day Massacre. Democrats naturally want more, but are supportive.

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Encore or Revival: America, December 18, 2017

This week brought a major revelation about corruption in the news industry. Generally, Symphony’s Encore avoids scandal “sleaze” stories, but this is becoming big news. A former Fox contributor—an attorney who left her job for work with Fox News—claims to have her own legal basis for breaking her silence that $2.5 million bought concerning her own harassment stories. “We just want to work,” she said. Her own words speak for themselves and it is a must-read story.

But note: the problem is by no means limited to Fox. The problem of harassment is not limited to sexual harassment nor is corruption limited to the news industry. Right now, major issues of corruption are being exposed across America. It will reach Sunday morning fellowships and news networks other than Fox. Similar scandals are on display with the Mueller investigation, which smells of corruption from both those investigated and those doing the investigation. Trump is wise to let Mueller continue because, one way or another, the people who are truly corrupt are either being exposed or exposing themselves and, in this case, possibly both.

People will try to exploit the many kinds of scandals as they always do. That will irritate people. Some will claim that none of the scandals are legitimate because of the phonies who want too much blood or too much attention. The public will become slower on the draw to mob and lynch criminals. And, people we never thought were scandalous will have their own truth shown. What we thought we knew is in for a major overhaul.

This is a call to sobriety, to respect and address the true problem, to grant forgiveness where it is needed, to accept help from people who have a turnabout “come to Jesus moment” about their own crimes, and to accept the truth about evils that no one wants to accept.

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Encore of Revival: America, December 11, 2017

Little to nothing new happened this week. The supposed Democratic attempt to fry Moore by frying Franken only fried Franken. Franken’s seat is secure for Democrats; Moore’s seat would be up for party grabs in Alabama. The theory goes that the Democratic party viewed Franken as expendable since a Democrat would likely replace him, but Moore, a Republican, would be replaced by a Democrat, thus the Democrats would gain a seat in the Senate. By accusing and frying Franken of the same kind of sex scandal as Moore, it seemed to be non-hypocritical for Democrats to expect that Moore step down.

That’s the theory anyway as to why so many Democrat-leaning voices went after Franken.

Theory or no, it didn’t happen. The Clinton years cemented the unofficial Democratic position that “sex and morals” don’t affect politicians—that a man can cheat on his wife and remain loyal to his country. Republicans are the party of “morality police”, in a sense. Once a sinner proves he is a sinner, it’s time to hang a “scarlet letter ‘A'” around his neck and burn him at the stake. But, especially with the public being tired from having to remove Kevin Spacey from their “favorites” lists, the Republican voters don’t want anymore. “A Republican proves to be a sinner in need of forgiveness” no longer means that “moralless Democrats need to gain power” in the minds of Republican voters. The press “pooped in its diapers” over scandals one too many times and the Religious Right just doesn’t care anymore. The “scandal trump card” is no longer part of the rules as of this political season.

With the Alabama special election coming up tomorrow, and a tax bill about to get through Congress, headlines may finally change a little from what they have been for the past month. Thanks to the continued distraction provided by Mueller’s ongoing and seemingly directionless investigation of Russianewsgategate, the White House is moving forward and may start creating new headlines soon. Not having to write the same story week after week will come as a relief to some writers, but a disappointing alarm to get off the couch for the mainstream.

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Encore of Revival: America, November 13, 2017

The vote swing in this week’s “off-year” election is not a referendum on Trump, but a referendum on a divided Republican party. The victories came largely from a state that twice elected Obama. The party will succeed in elections as much as it succeeds in unity. Disowning Trump has now proven that it only helps Democrats, which makes all the sense in the world.

Trump has every reason to continue to allow Mueller’s investigation. There doesn’t seem to be any dirt on Trump to find, Mueller keeps losing credibility, and Anti-Trumpists are well-distracted by the distant hope that Mueller might find something to warrant impeachment. While the Mueller drama continues, Trump can get legislation through Congress, many Anti-Trumpists are too tired to notice, and the press doesn’t have any ink left to report on it. That’s not to mention that the stronger the fruitless scrutiny, the stronger it makes Trump look, not to mention a 25% boom in stocks since Hillary conceded. If Mueller is part of a conspiracy, it almost seems that his “conspiracy” would be to help Trump. That’s what he is accomplishing, anyway.

Christians are getting even more guns. They are doing it legally and they are arming to the teeth. The Texas Church Massacre has opened many eyes to the vulnerability of certain traditions. “Conceal carry” seems to be a favored answer. Everyone is hardening their stance, the country is polarizing, and, thanks to social media, everyone’s political opinion is on record. This year, the country is getting some of the strongest—and most helpful—looks in the mirror we’ve gotten for a long while.

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Encore of Revival: America, August 21, 2017

Popularity collided with reality. The departure of Peter Strzok from Mueller’s investigative team comes in the wake of revelations that Russianewsgategate is “nonsense”. Strzok wasn’t wet behind the ears; he knows counter intel. An experienced investigator doesn’t leave a team for no reason. With the financial-legal load of people being investigated and the widespread opinion that Mueller had stepped way beyond scope, Mueller and his team could be looking at being investigated for investigating a “known nothing”.

It takes two to fight. There are always heroes, cowards, and hate mongers on every side. Not everyone in Charlottesville, VA wanted violence. Many wanted to peacefully make their point. But, ideologies don’t always lead where their supporters intend. Trump said as much and condemned everyone who contributed to violence in Charlottesville. But, that didn’t fit the pre-scribed “who to condemn before seeing evidence” playscript of populism and “looking cool” tactics of business leaders. So, the big money CEO council Trump put together condemned Trump’s remarks about the riot and resigned from giving the country business advice.

Their resignations, and Trump’s disbanding the group likely due to their resignations, are out of place. It’s a business advisory committee, not a counter-riot think tank. If IBM and General Electric know so much about riots, they should have provided a privatized solution, if nothing other than research. But, they didn’t. They were simply trying to look good by throwing people under the bus at the right moment. Many companies, including NBC and Macy’s tried similar tactics, which consistently backfired.

The resignation-instigated dissolution of that business advisory council carries two implications: 1. They will no-longer have voice, much like North Korea cutting off relations, which only hurts itself. 2. Business leaders aren’t political experts and should stick to their purpose, no matter how tempting it is to parrot populist mantra. Both of these two reasons will come back to haunt these very companies because their comments were a departure from the mission of their businesses and the task of their council. By commenting off topic, they were the ones who lost.

Republicans in Congress, also, seem to be unwilling to publicly defend Trump, merely because the timing makes it “not cool”. It is interesting that corporate leadership, political leadership, and FBI investigation leadership disbanded after their teams had gotten off task. The country is in a “mission-statement” crisis and the establishment is hammering itself in the foot over and over again with playbook grandstanding. Sooner or later, unnecessary appendixes of the establishment will do themselves in, most likely for the better.

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