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Wasserman writes: “The unthinkable is upon us. A president of the United States poses a clear and present danger to our global survival. He is mentally unstable, dangerously incompetent, throughly dishonest and can’t be trusted with the safety of our children or our planet.”

Protesters in Washington, DC, rallying against the inauguration of Donald Trump. (photo: Andrew Stefan/RSN)
Protesters in Washington, DC, rallying against the inauguration of Donald Trump. (photo: Andrew Stefan/RSN)

RESTORE SANITY: A Mass Nonviolent Satyagraha Campaign to Remove Donald Trump

15 April 17


By Lila Garrett, David Swanson, Suzanne Patzer, Bob Fitrakis, Ruthie Sakheim, Harvey Wasserman and many more ...

he unthinkable is upon us.

A president of the United States poses a clear and present danger to our global survival. It’s become our duty to remove him soon, beyond the electoral system, and strictly without violence.


President Trump’s random missile attack is the predictable martial diversion for a failing regime. Had Barack Obama done it the entire right wing would be screaming for impeachment.

To justify an impetuous fling, Trump summoned images of chemical weapons killing helpless children. But had those kids been refugees trying to come here, Trump might well have barred them, and derided their parents.

This chaotic regime’s military adventures have already killed innumerable innocents in Yemen and elsewhere for no apparent reason. Had this attack targeted North Korea, or another nuclear-armed nation, mushroom clouds might now be ending human life on Earth.


This regime is cynically assaulting our global ecosystems, the rising green infrastructure on which our ecological and economic future depends, as well as women, people of color, the poor, the elderly, the infirm. Trump has polluted the White House with an outrageous culture of personal gain at public expense.

Donald Trump lost the 2016 election by at least 2.8 million popular votes. He lost the exit polls in the five states that swung the Electoral College. GOP secretaries of state used Crosscheck and other computer programs to disenfranchise countless citizens of color. They may well have flipped the electronic voting machines on which 80% of the nation’s ballots were cast or counted.

Without a legitimate electoral process, and saddled with a timid corporatist Democratic Party, how do we respond?

Two US presidents have been impeached but not removed. Richard Nixon resigned in the face of a massive popular upheaval. By his own admission, that uprising prevented him from using nuclear weapons in Vietnam.

Donald Trump is the corporatist response to a rising social fervor that speaks for the soul of this nation. Bernie Sanders remains America’s most popular politician. Even in the face of a totally corrupted governmental structure, we must never underestimate our larger power.

As with Nixon, the madness of today’s White House demands a whole new level of organizing, resistance and overthrow, of “satyagraha” – focused peaceful action – pioneered by the American independence, abolitionist, suffragette and labor movements, by Mahatma Gandhi’s Quit India campaign, Dr. Martin Luther King’s work for civil rights, the nonviolent resistance that helped bring down the Soviet Union, Nelson Mandala’s victory against South African apartheid, the Otpor campaign against Serbia’s Milosevic dictatorship, the global feminist, No Nukes, LGBTQ+, Occupy, Black Lives Matter, Sandernista campaigns, and many more.

Today there are no simple answers, except to be civil in our disobedience. Any violence must be assumed to come from those who want us to fail.

Our way forward might include mass rallies, marches, boycotts, strikes, non-cooperation, tax resistance, guerrilla theater, door-to-door conversation, and much more we may not yet envision.

The great nonviolent strategist Gene Sharp lists some 200 such tactics at his legendary Einstein Institute. Mark and Paul Engler beautifully explore nonviolent activism in their “This Is an Uprising” ( Jim Hightower has gracefully mentioned some longer-term solutions in his latest column.

As with Nixon, we suspect that somewhere in the corrupt chaos of Trump’s towering arrogance, we will find the critical overreach.

And somewhere in the mix of our own relentless activism, there will be the power to make that matter.

Our nation was born of an impossible campaign that overthrew a tyrant.

To RESTORE SANITY in today’s nuclear age we may need even more creativity, imagination and good faith.

But we had damn well better win fast, before this madman kills us all.


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Founder, Reader Supported News

+49 # mashiguo 2017-04-15 13:39
How are we going to restore sanity?
Has anyone examined the line of succession?

Ain't much sanity there, and ain't much on the democrat side either, as Hillary would already have been shooting down Russian planes according to her own words.

Just where are you going to find this sanity AND a constitutional path to empowering it?
+26 # lfeuille 2017-04-15 19:02
We can find the sanity, but the constitutional path to empowering it doesn't exist. The constitution would have to be amended to say that everyone in the line of succession would only be ACTING president until a special election could be held.
+7 # sbessho 2017-04-15 19:04
To mashiguo: So you advocate doing nothing? Is that the proper response to a threat of this nature? If not, then please say what you think we should do and don't nay-say those who want to resist in whatever way they can. If you are not up to it, please don't interfere.
-2 # lfeuille 2017-04-16 17:22
I don't think that's what he's saying. He's just calling for more realistic expectations for the resistance.
+18 # vicnada 2017-04-15 20:18
Good question, mashiguo.The following isn't my idea. It's a long shot but the more I think about it, it's doable in the climate of impatience in our populous such as is exemplified by this article.
1) Continue to do what we are doing...organiz e, protest and elect as many progressives in as many political offices--big and small--as possible;
2) Keep the impeachment push going. Harness whatever power we have to engage those who can prepare the path for removing Trump AND Pence;
3) Have the Republicans forcably shut down all of these efforts and in doing so force them to take their stand with the maniac and insanity that he represents;
4) Elect a new House of Representatives with as many Progressives in place as well as non-establishme nt Democratic types;
5) Have Bernie give up his Senate seat and run as Representative from Vermont for the House instead;
6) Move to have him established as Speaker of the House with a majority responsive to the sane demands of We the People;
7) Impeach Trump early in his third year AND Pence concomitantly;
8) Bernie takes the office that he should have won in 2016 except for DNC conniving and superdelegates' betrayal.

Please, someone, remind me who first suggested this idea on RSN's pages. He/She might flesh things out a bit differently but it's what I remember.
+5 # chapdrum 2017-04-17 12:32
vicnada, agree but don't feel that our country as we've known it, will survive Don until "...his third year..." At this rate, it won't survive year one.
+9 # economagic 2017-04-15 20:26
Serious questions all, with no clear or easy answers. At this point, unfortunately for the future, constitutionali ty may be less the issue than effectiveness, with no clear vision for the latter.

I like Harvey Wasserman a lot, but his focus here is too narrow. Trump is not the problem, only the current manifestation of the neoliberal juggernaut that has been carrying us toward the brink for decades. That has been possible because of an often timid and apathetic public and by a near-total abnegation of duty by cowardly and corrupt corporate media of their responsibility in a democracy. I believe Wasserman's call for a broadly based and rigorously non-violent popular uprising is entirely apropos. We must not forget the enormous national and global opposition to the invasion of Iraq -- nor the intransigence of the government and to a large extent the MSM to it.

As far as I can see, no one has any real idea how that could come about. My take is that if it is to occur, it will occur as a string of emergent phenomena in the exceedingly complex system that is human society. This is no hippie fantasy, nor even a (Buckminster) Fullerian dream, but established science, with the first Nobel in Chemistry in 1977. The worldwide movement of movements is in place. Let us hope that enough of us will be in the right place at the right time.
+2 # jouster 2017-04-17 11:25
While I disagree with VP Pence about almost everything, unlike Trump he's not thin-skinned, impulsive, self aggrandizing, profiteering, ignorant and traitorous.

OTOH, Pence would probably be far more effective working with Congress to deny human rights, support religious bigotry and screw over most of Americans to further enrich the rich and powerful.

It's a lose-lose choice, but I believe that Pence is far less likely to stupidly, impulsively or accidentally get us into a nuclear conflict.
+33 # ddd-rrr 2017-04-15 17:48
"RIGHT ON!", Harvey Wasserman!

And, "thank you" to RSN for publishing this!
+59 # Citizen Mike 2017-04-15 18:18
I am not so sure this plan can succeed, but am convinced the guy will destroy himself by carelessly going too far. He will do things which invite impeachment, and will have to quit in disgrace like Nixon.
+19 # lfeuille 2017-04-15 19:04
It's not as simple as it was back then. Congress was controlled by Democrats. No it's controlled by Republicans who don't appear to understand the concept of "too far".
+3 # Cassandra2012 2017-04-16 15:49
Quoting lfeuille:
It's not as simple as it was back then. Congress was controlled by Democrats. No it's controlled by Republicans who don't appear to understand the concept of "too far".

Quite, since the clearly undemocratic, authoritarian. shill to the dying fossil fuel industry, turtle McConnell continues to lur in the darkness... .
+18 # rofo47 2017-04-15 20:01
A narcissist like Trump will never resign. His ego would not allow it.
+13 # grandlakeguy 2017-04-15 18:49
Another great piece from truth teller Harvey Wasserman!

I fervently believe that the key to throwing out this illegitimate regime is in educating the public to the truth about the fraudulent nature of our elections.
Trump was no more legitimately elected than Hillary Clinton was legitimately the winner of the nominating process.

The American people must be made aware that our elections are fake and it is the duty of every journalist of conscience to work towards that end.

If the truth that our elections are not real becomes widely known then a national strike and nonstop demonstrations against this administration are the tools to force new elections with the requirement of hand counted paper ballots.
+20 # Michaeljohn 2017-04-15 18:56
Trump 'quit in disgrace' ...? Ha, he'll have to be dragged, out kicking and tweeting the while .... I won, I won
+6 # oakes721 2017-04-15 19:16
The American Dream has turned into the Great American Nightmare. Dreams seek harmony to realize peace and balance within this world. America nurtures endless Wars to sustain the blood thirst of weapons manufacturers for the easy profits of destruction.
A pathogen for total annihilation of the host has emerged. A cancer which steals our healthy energy while delivering only darkness and dis-ease in its place.
Radical surgical procedures (body violence) is suggested in emergency situations ~ while nutrition, rest and recuperation promise a healthier return.
American BIG medicine prefers to hide the symptoms, deny its wake of damage left in its role as weapons-supplyi ng, unwanted Peace-Keeper around the globe. Likewise, the American Dream shrivels away in denial as a systemic cancer is 'believed' to be benign.
+1 # markovchhaney 2017-04-15 20:08
It's already been pointed out that impeaching, convicting, and removing Trump (forgetting whether there are actually grounds for impeachment that won't make Democrats look as idiotic and hypocritical as the Republicans who got an impeachment trial of Bill Clinton for lying about what he was doing with his penis that didn't involve Hillary) simply gives us President Pence. And it's hard to imagine in any way that he would be an improvement over Trump. On social issues, he might well ultimately prove to be far, far worse given his fundamentalism and evangelicalism.

The reality seems to be that we're going to bounce back and forth between Republican presidents that partisan Democrats want impeached and Democratic presidents that partisan Republicans want impeached, and loads of adherents of one or the other team screaming for blood. It was bad during the GWB era, horrid during the Obama era, but the current hue and cry are like both of those multiplied together. It's vicious, relentless, and for the most part devoid of evidence. Stepping away from which side has God with them, the rhetoric is really indistinguishab le. Trump is Satan, Trump is the savior. What an enormous crock of nonsense coming from partisans on both sides. I, for one, find it impossible to take seriously. Just another round of reservoir dogs barking.
+6 # jackdresser 2017-04-15 23:32
I'm of course pleased to note that Trump, as a low-hanging pinata, has succeeded in finally arousing the US population from its charactetristic torpor, but what "sanity" does Wasserman propose to "restore"? The sanity of Bill Clinton's sanctions on Iraq that killed a half-million children or his secret sponsorship of Paul Kagame's 1994 invasion of Rwanda and two subsequent invasions of Zaire, launching and sustaining the rare mineral wars of Central Africa that killed 6-7 million Africans? The sanity of Bush junior who violently assaulted Iraq on completely fabricated pretenses, killing over a million Iraqis and entirely devastating what was once a well-developed, secular, socialist society free of terrorism? The sanity of Obama/Clinton who destroyed the secular, socialist, most highly developed nation with the highest human development index in Africa, then looted Libya's arsenals for weapons transfer to Turkey and launched through proxies the attempted gang lynching of yet another well-developed, secular, socialist Arab state - still ongoing - and set in motion the CIA/neo-nazi coup in Ukraine for IMF rapacity and further imperial encirclement of Russia, deposing their elected president? Trump has a very long way to go to catch up with his highly accomplished criminal predecessors. They should all be tried for war crimes at The Hague along with Trump's impeachment before he joins their distinguished ranks.
+5 # Wise woman 2017-04-16 00:53
Here's hoping pence and tillerson will do the same. Unless the trio goes, not much will change. Welcome to the world of insane right wing politics
+2 # John S. Browne 2017-04-16 13:58

Please forgive my cynicism, but when have we had sanity in the U.S., or in the world at the U.S. government's and their ally's hands? Conservative figure, the U.S. government and military have mass-murdered over ten million innocent people just since, and including, W.W.2. How many people were they responsible for during W.W.1? And before that, including the Philippines, etc.? At the rate they're going, they'll be responsible for, what, twenty million or more in another ten years, including American citizens, perhaps (far?) more?

What a country, and what a world that goes along with it. At least the world is no longer venerating the U.S. like it used to. But do you think the globalist puppetmasters and stringpullers who run the international war machine care? Of course not. As far as they're concerned, the U.S. can become the most hated country in the world; for, if they succeed in continuing to complete their game plan for globalization of the world, by then the U.S. and all the Western nations will be a memory, swallowed up by one-world government enslavement.

Yes, that's what global government will be, worldwide enslavement, including in the former Western countries. The global enslavers have made the entire planet a battlefield where everyone who stands for the defense of True Human and Civil Rights, and True Liberty(ies) and Freedom(s), are considered to be the "enemy" who must be eradicated. They only want willing slaves who believe they're still "free".

-1 # elkingo 2017-04-16 14:17
Jesus! THAT is the Declaration of Independence.
+3 # 2017-04-17 09:00
thanks rsn for publishing this. good comments.

obviously we must now go beyond just removing trump. we have an unelected deep fascist state in power in this country.

how to remove it with a rightful, righteous majority? that will take some figuring. but we have no choice, do we?

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