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Charles Meredith: Anticipating November

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Dear Friends,

Good morning. Last week, I received several interesting letters from you readers. One of them was from Florence Paul of Fountainville. She suggested that “American Oligarchs” by Andrea Bernstein is worth reading. “Sharing fact, facts presented by the ‘Orange Orangutan’ (her description of Donald Trump) was an insult to the orangutan according to her neighbors,” Ms. Paul began. “The book is about the Trumps and Kushners, two families who pursue power and wealth.”

She noted that President Trump promised to surround himself with the best and smartest people he knew. “Fourteen, plus, of these ‘best’ are now in prison,” she wrote. “And one who touts himself as a business genius has defaulted on so many loans and has had so many bankruptcies, there is no American bank that will do business with him.

“We have a Commander in Tweet who is a lying, corrupt, bigoted, sexist, malignant narcissist racist and an egotistical psychotic moron with no integrity, honesty or respect for women,” Ms. Paul concluded.

And speaking about President Trump’s problem with the truth, the Washington Post reported (June 8) that Colin Powell, the former secretary of state and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that he would vote for Joseph Biden in the November election because President Donald Trump has drifted away from the U.S. Constitution, is a chronic liar, and is dangerous to our country.

Turning to local items, my musician, friend David Fluck, acknowledged that my article about Reta Bieber approximated her age. I thought that this wonderful piano player was in her early nineties. David discovered that Reta graduated from Penn State in 1943, probably turning age 22. “That would put her age at 99 or so,” he observed. Sounds like Reta is closer to 100 and is still going strong. God bless her.

As I wrote, Reta Bieber played for our quartet for years as we’d sing “There’s a Quaker Down in Quakertown.” David thinks we should resurrect our group (Larry Benner, David Fluck, Rodney Henry, Richard Nice and me) and sing again. We’ll see. Maybe we’ll add a few women to the group. It would sound better … look better too.

Finally, I received an email from Michael Frank of Doylestown. He wrote about Daniel Gilligan’s critical but accurate letter to me.

“And it is only the opinions of those for whom we have any respect and hold in any regard that are given consideration, or hold any consequence,” Frank began. “Based on current polling, a person who more Americans hold in low consideration is our president plus those members of Congress who follow him obediently.

“His sarcastic and false statements, his shortcomings and inadequacies, as a person and as a leader, are too many to list here. His malfeasance, misfeasance and nonfeasance as president command little respect and he is shedding voters, for himself and the GOP, as can be interpreted from the 2018 elections.

“America’s backbone strength relies on government workers who, among others, include educators, scientists, firefighters, law enforcement officers, members of our armed forces, health care providers and first responders who work long hours and risk their lives in America’s defense and in saving others’ lives during this pandemic” Frank opined.

“Maybe Mr. Gilligan was thinking of members of Congress and the President who have enjoyed much at taxpayers’ expense.”

Sometime soon, I will revisit former Vice President Joseph Biden’s leadership of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee in 1991 when he chaired it for the U.S. Supreme Court confirmation hearing of Clarence Thomas. Biden refused to call three witnesses for Anita Hill who would have echoed Ms. Hill’s accusations against Judge Thomas. It was not Biden’s finest hour. I’m not one of Biden’s devoted fans, although I’ll vote for him.

Sincerely, Charles Meredith


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