Funeral Arrangements

Funeral Arrangements by James Howard Kunstler

As they like to say in the horror movie trailers: It… begins…! (Cue bassoons and waterphones.)

If last Wednesday’s solemn and prayerful parade through the Capitol rotunda was the Democratic Party’s funeral march, then impeachment starting this week may be the burial service. Central casting couldn’t have found a more perfect funeral director than the grave and genteel Mitch McConnell.

Of course, the Democrats have been screeching for new witnesses because Adam Schiff (D-CA) muffed his due diligence on the House side. The tactical fallback, courtesy of Lawfare, is to provoke a legal pissing match over executive privilege, which they hope to turn into a campaign ploy in the months ahead: Trump concealed the truth! This time, though, I doubt the Senate rules will give them a chance to run option plays from the Brett Kavanaugh playbook, flooding the end zone with obvious geeks and bottom-feeders of the Michael Avanatti species.

And, naturally, the witness question beats a path directly to the Bidens. Open that door and there is really nothing on God’s green earth that will keep Hunter B out of the witness chair. In which case he will have to reiterate what he said in a TV interview a few months back — they’ll play the recording in-session — which is that he got the $83-K-a-month do-nothing gig on the Burisma board-of-directors because he was the Vice-president’s son. Or he, can change his story and cast himself as a liar. It would not be necessary to call Joe Biden, just submit in evidence that recording of him bragging on how he strong-armed the Ukrainians to shut down their Burisma investigation by threatening to withhold a billion-dollar aid-and-loan package. Hmmmm. Sounds suspiciously like what Mr. Trump is accused of, absent evidence.

Was Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) playing dumb on Face the Nation Sunday when he said Hunter Biden shouldn’t testify because he has no knowledge of the accusation? Or, is Mr. Nadler just dumb enough to forget that in a trial, the person accused of something is called the defendant because he’s entitled to defend himself? The corruption in the Hunter B matter is not just obvious, it’s confessed. Everyone seems to have forgotten that the US has a treaty with Ukraine on mutual legal assistance in criminal matters signed at Kiev on July 22, 1998. How, exactly, does that not apply to Mr. Trump’s conversation with Mr. Zelensky?

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James Howard Kunstler

James Howard Kunstler says he wrote The Geography of Nowhere, “Because I believe a lot of people share my feelings about the tragic landscape of highway strips, parking lots, housing tracts, mega-malls, junked cities, and ravaged countryside that makes up the everyday environment where most Americans live and work.” Home From Nowhere was a continuation of that discussion with an emphasis on the remedies. A portion of it appeared as the cover story in the September 1996 Atlantic Monthly. His next book in the series, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, published by Simon & Schuster / Free Press, is a look a wide-ranging look at cities here and abroad, an inquiry into what makes them great (or miserable), and in particular what America is going to do with it’s mutilated cities.