LIBERALS DEFINE TRUMPS SUCCESS IN FIRST 100 DAYS

What Trump has “accomplished”:

reinstating the Keystone pipeline – this is bad for the environment.
reinstating the universal gag order – women all over the world will now be turned away from receiving legal medical help.
reinstating the deportation of undocumented immigrants that are not criminals or dangerous to society – this does no good for anyone, especially the families that are torn apart.
Chose Gorsuch for SCOTUS, who is anti women, POC, immigrants and pro corporations
The rest of what Trump has written in his Executive Orders consist of:

telling his cabinet secretaries to do their jobs (which would be like your mom asking you to do your chores on national television)
asking for more information on the subject
creating loopholes in ethics for lobbyists and members in his administration
or…they are suspended/revoked by the court systems.
Trump’s “tax plan” was 250 words (my answer to your “question” is 32 words longer), 7 bullet points, giving tax cuts to the richest people in the U.S., ignoring small business owners.

Trump has gone back on his campaign promises regarding Syria, Mexico paying for the wall, draining the swamp, NAFTA, China, etc.

Trump claims that he is bringing jobs back by claiming deals made by Obama before Trump was elected.

Trump continues to have zero transparency.

Trump continues to divide the country by making no effort to bring people together.

What has he accomplished? I think you know that Trump has done nothing for most of America.

Unlikely that the next 100 days will be any better

CAN TRUMP POSSIBLY GET REELECTED

Dan Munro, Author of Casino Healthcare and Forbes Contributor
Written Mar 6
Not a snowball’s chance in hell — and I doubt he’ll survive his first term. Here’s the track record in less than 5 weeks as POTUS:

Trump spends first 48 hours arguing about the size of his inauguration crowd.

Trump signs executive order on immigration, but it’s so poorly written that it causes chaos around the country and is immediately put on hold by a district court.

Trump chooses crackpot as National Security Advisor, fires him three weeks after inauguration.

Trump tries to bully China by playing games with One China policy, is forced into humiliating retreat after realizing he’s playing out of his league.

Trump casually green-lights a raid on Yemen over dinner. The raid turns into an epic disaster that kills a SEAL and accomplishes nothing.

Trump lays all blame for failure of Yemen raid on “the generals” who “started [the mission] before I got here” and “they killed him.”

Trump blathers about the [border] wall and a 20 percent border tax on Mexico, causing the Mexican president to cancel a planned visit.

Trump continues to claim that crime is skyrocketing; that polls showing his unpopularity are fake; and that refugees have wreaked terror on America, despite the fact that these are all lies.

Trump calls the media “the enemy of the American people.”

After weeks of confusion on their signature priority, Republicans finally realize that repealing Obamacare isn’t all that easy — and Trump goes on the record with this quote: “Nobody knew health care could be so complicated.” Nobody?

Trump proposes spending an extra $54 billion on defense without realizing he can’t do that.

Trump accuses former President Obama of “wiretapping” his campaign prior to the election — and offers no evidence to support the allegation (without realizing that a President has no such singular legal authority).

Embarrassingly supports embattled AG Sessions — who is forced to recuse himself after lying under oath.
Is angered by AG who recuses himself — in spite of his personal belief that recusal was unnecessary.

Ties to Russian tampering of the election have dogged his short tenure — and effectively squelched any polling bump he might have recieved after a successful reading of a 60-minute speech before a joint session of congress.

Trump Approval Chart

As evidenced by this large (and growing) list of outright blunders, Trump is totally unqualified for the office he now holds. The ties to Russian tampering of the election is a likely impeachable offense — and this is at the earliest stages of discovery and prosecution.

As a part of that discovery, Trump’s taxes will likely be subpoenaed and we will all learn just how indebted Trump is financially to a wide assortment of shady banks around the world. Most reputable banks refused to lend into Trump ventures long ago — after getting burned in one of his many business failures (some of which resulted in outright bankruptcy).

Keeping his tax returns secret was a strategic imperative early in Trump’s campaign because everyone associated with the campaign knew that he wouldn’t have secured even the nomination had they been disclosed. As it is, Trump has refused to divest himself of his vast holdings — which are awash in financial commitments from a long list of allies and potential threats to American interests (both domestically and abroad).

This puts him in direct violation of the “Emoluments” clause of the Constitution — which he swore (on 2 bibles) to uphold.

The issue isn’t a second term. The issue is how soon will he be ejected?

NO WONDER REPUBLICANS HID THE HEALTH BILL

Republican House leaders have spent months dodging questions about how they would replace the Affordable Care Act with a better law, and went so far as to hide the draft of their plan from other lawmakers. No wonder. The bill they released on Monday would kick millions of people off the coverage they currently have. So much for President Trump’s big campaign promise: “We’re going to have insurance for everybody” — with coverage that would be “much less expensive and much better.”

More than 20 million Americans gained health care coverage under the A.C.A., or Obamacare. Health experts say most would lose that coverage under the proposal.

Let’s start with Medicaid. Obamacare expanded the program to cover 11 million more poor Americans in 31 states and the District of Columbia. The Republican bill would end the expansion in 2020. Although people who sign up before 2020 under the expanded Medicaid program, which covers people with incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level (about $33,900 for a family of four), would be allowed to stay on, many would be kicked off over time. The working poor tend to drop in and out of Medicaid because their incomes fluctuate, and the Republican plan would bar people who left the expanded program from going back in.

Tom Price, secretary of health and human services, discussing the Republican bill to replace the Affordable Care Act. Credit Doug Mills/The New York Times
The bill would also, for the first time ever, apply a per-person limit on how much the federal government spends on Medicaid. This change could shift about $370 billion in health care costs over 10 years to state governments, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Many state governments, faced with limited budgets, would be forced to cut benefits or cover fewer people.

For people who buy insurance on federal or state-run health exchanges, the G.O.P. plan would greatly reduce the A.C.A.’s subsidies, which come in the form of tax credits. For example, a 40-year-old living in Raleigh, N.C., who earns $30,000 a year would receive $3,000 from the government to buy insurance, 32 percent less than under current law, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. The bill would provide older people more generous subsidies — those over 60 get a subsidy of $4,000, or twice as much as 20-somethings — but insurers would be allowed to charge older people five times as much as younger people.

The plan would do away with the current mandate that requires nearly everybody to obtain insurance or pay a penalty. (Instead, insurers would be allowed to charge people who don’t maintain their insurance continuously 30 percent more for coverage.) But because the legislation would still require insurers to cover pre-existing conditions, people would have a strong financial incentive to buy insurance only when they got sick — a sure way to destroy the insurance market.

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Tom Price, the secretary of health and human services, have railed against high premiums and deductibles for plans sold on the health exchanges, but that problem would only worsen under their proposal because insurers would almost certainly raise their prices as the pool of the insured shrank. Republican lawmakers seem to think that people who can’t afford insurance are simply irresponsible. Representative Jason Chaffetz of Utah, for instance, told CNN that people should invest in their health care, “rather than getting that new iPhone.” Word to Mr. Chaffetz: Health insurance costs more than $18,000 a year for an average family; an iPhone costs a few hundred dollars.

While working people lose health care, the rich would come out winners. The bill would eliminate the taxes on businesses and individuals (people making more than $200,000 a year) who fund Obamacare. The tax cuts would total about $600 billion over 10 years, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation.

House committees will start considering the bill on Wednesday. Even if it passes the House, some Republican senators object to the Medicaid cuts and the Tea Party wing hates the idea of retaining any subsidies.

Republicans have been vowing to repeal the Affordable Care Act even before it became law in 2010. But they still haven’t come up with a workable replacement. Instead, the G.O.P.’s various factions are now haggling over just how many millions of Americans they are willing to harm.

TRUMP BLAMES MILITARY FOR SEAL’S DEATH IN BOTCHED YEMEN OPERATION

What do you think of Trump blaming the military for SEAL’s death in botched Yemen operation?

There’s a story in my family about how my grandfather’s military career almost came to an end over an ill-fated intelligence-gathering mission.

On September 2, 1958, a C-130 on a reconnaissance mission flew into Soviet-controlled airspace along the Turkish-Armenian border. It was intercepted by four Soviet fighters and shot down, killing all seventeen servicemen aboard – six crewmen, and eleven personnel of the Air Force Security Service, then the U.S. Air Force’s cryptographic intelligence unit[1].

It’s still unclear what caused the plane to enter the restricted airspace – there is speculation in declassified documents that the aircraft was lured into the airspace by false navigation beacons, but there has never been any evidence found to support this – but regardless of the cause, the incident demanded an investigation.

My grandfather, the squadron’s commander, was recalled to Washington, DC, in the days following the incident to debrief the Air Force’s senior-most leaders about the mission, and what had since been learned. The first question, though, was, “Who’s responsible for this?”

My grandfather certainly wasn’t calling a play-by-play from his far-away office in Germany. Operationally, he had likely signed off on dozens of similar operations as part of the broader intelligence-gathering effort. He could have blamed the pilot, the plane’s instruments, his operational instructions, Soviet aggression – anything – and probably could have been right.

Instead, he answered, “I am.” In his view, the lost airmen were under his command, and so their deaths were his responsibility.

His commanding officers agreed; but rather than sack him, they went about the work of figuring out what happened, what could have gone wrong, and how to prevent subsequent incidents.

It’s shocking that Commander-in-Chief Trump would do anything other than take ultimate responsibility for the death of an American serviceman. The military may have planned the raid before he became President, but he signed off on it. The responsibility for its successes or failures ultimately rests with him, because he’s at the top of the chain of command. It doesn’t mean that he’s personally accountable, but that he understands his role as the ultimate authority in the chain of events that resulted in Owens’ death.

My personal view is that his buck-passing gives more evidence to his supreme lack of fitness for the office he occupies. It’s an expectation that when things go wrong and lives are lost, the President has the capacity and good sense to accept responsibility – especially when it’s his signature on the dotted line to authorize the military action. President Kennedy took responsibility for the Bay of Pigs operation, and President Carter took responsibility for the failed operation to rescue the American hostages in Iran.

To pass the buck and claim that it’s the generals’ fault, or the fault of any other operator, that things went bad and lives were unnecessarily lost is unacceptable conduct from a President.

WILL TRUMP REGRET BEING PRESIDENT

Do you think Donald Trump will regret being president?
Dan Erlich
Dan Erlich, Jew, Zionist, Father was officer in the Palmach, sailor, quite creative/handy

I think he will truly regret and fears being regarded as the worst president to have ever served in the office. This realization will come but however, I don’t think he regrets being president – just yet…

Tens of millions of Americans think he is an ass hole more than this number know he is a liar. Millions of Americans are taking to the streets and have done so multiple times including several times spontaneously in the first THREE WEEKS of his presidency, this is unprecedented that a new president has drawn this level of ire from the population that they go to the streets in protest and say that they refuse to grant their consent to be governed by this man or his administration, Large numbers of people are convinced he has mental issues up to and including being delusional. Stores are dropping his Daughter’s brands in droves. He has exposed his owned Trump assets to terrorist reprisals. People are marching in the millions in the streets on a repeated and regular basis, thousands are showing up to Republican congressional town halls in protest, Trump got his butt handed to him twice by the courts, he got caught dismissing a capable dedicated acting attorney general wrongfully. He does not like being over ruled and his responses expose his childish ego for all to see.

He has lived without his Wife by his side for three weeks – he has met her in Palm Beach on two weekends in a row – I guess once a week for him is plenty but if not it is all he is getting. He got in two rounds of golf so far in three weeks. Not bad, not great. The point being that his time is no longer his own and for a man who had plenty of money and the freedom to do as he wished, he no longer has this freedom to do as he wishes. The white house is a prison, nicer than most but still a prison.

He is not allowed to fly HIS jet, it is in storage and he has to use Air Force One and shlep the White House press corps wherever he goes. This plane is nice, but it is not as nice as his plane is. He has to ride around in a bomb proof truck they call the beast and he can not drive any of his own cars, so what is the point of owning these toys if he derives no personal enjoyment from them. He has this three story condo in Midtown Manhattan with a great view that he does not get to live in, his Wife lives there with his young son and he has to live in Washington DC… in public housing and use Obama’s toilet. He has to do his own hair. His life is not “optimal” is an understatement and in particular compared to what it was.

He learned how to salute – that was a big deal.

He has not learned how to shake hands yet.

So give him a few weeks, then he will regret being President, when he wants to spend more time with his Wife, when he wants to golf more often, when he gets tired of people telling him he is an ass hole, when he wants to use his own jet, when he wants to drive his own car, when he gets tired of people saying he is a liar.

He might get off on killing a billion or more people by pushing a button – that might be his idea of fun. Afterwards is not so much fun.

Look at the pictures of Obama enjoying himself as a retiree, smiling, relaxed plenty of money, his Wife by his side, no responsibilities, no aggravations and then look at a picture of Trump – he looks like he sucked on a lemon.

Does he regret being President? I wonder if he is smart enough to regret it yet. He is seventy years old and he is just starting. Obama is fifty five years old and he is over it. You tell me which man is smarter, it is not a question it is a rhetorical statement of fact.

OPEN LETTER TO DONALD TRUMP FROM NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI

An open letter to Donald Trump, from the guy who wrote the book on power moves

To: Donald J. Trump, President

From: Niccolò Machiavelli

Re: Recommendations

As I have elsewhere explored at length, the true worth of a Prince is determined by the means with which he takes power and how he seeks to manage his principality in the aftermath. Concerning your rise to power, I must first commend you on your masterful victory over your opponents. In Gaul, Caesar divided the barbarians so thoroughly that even when they united under Vercingetorix they could not bring themselves to victory, just as you have stoked existing divides in the opposing Democratic faction to ultimately rule over them. I must also commend your ability to grab opportunity and fortuna — a most masculine virtue — as well your ability to use hidden allies, whosoever they may be, to great effect. In that, however, my commendation must turn to caution, for these methods which have brought you success could also bring your downfall. Consider Agathocles, the Syracuse tyrant who came to power by slaughtering his fellow citizens. He not only acquired a princedom out of his misdeeds, but retained it. Why? Because by committing his worst sins at once, he could then reassure his subjects and make amends for his misdeeds. Alas, such wisdom in sinning is today lacking.

Instead, your ill-advised sins in election and in governance have been committed in continuous succession, a manner allowing the bitter vice to be savored in the thoughts of your subjects. Such sins include vilification of your enemies — that may have brought you victory, but comes with great costs and enemies. Once disjointed and apprehensive, these foes now hold hatred for you, greater than ever before, and thus will only labor greater than ever before to defeat you. Remember Gracchus, who led an army raised of slaves against Carthage and punished with death any who chided his soldiers for their past stature — that only inflamed and reminded them of those who had enslaved them. Your words alone, often ill-chosen and sent by nightly courier, only remind and rouse your enemies into a pack of wolves thirsting for your blood.

You have also acquired allies, within and beyond your state, who have helped put you into power, and on whom you have come to depend, for lack of your own foundation. Yet, those allies have little to give, and you are fortunate they squabble among themselves. Beware Russia, however, where corruption is a cancer upon state and people, and its Prince who will use you for his own purposes. When your real enemies come baying, you will have acquired from your friends only an image of promised aid rather than the aid itself. It was thus when the Florentines, under assault from the King of Naples as allies of the Pope, sought such undelivered aid from friends Bologna and Milan, a friendship offering “more notoriety than protection.” So, like Caesar before you, beware the Ides of March, for should you ever waver in your rule, at home and across the seas, those wolves shall come: You will have neither sword nor shield to defend with.

There is still time to learn to read, to write and to adopt a temperament befitting a Prince, who must speak well and appear honest, even if it is sometimes necessary to bear falsehoods. But you have so far failed to even appear virtuous, choosing instead to placate some and alarm others with exaggeration. You arrived in your position by the favor of the people; you ought then to be indomitable, yet that favor arose out of a minority, many of which are still wary of your virtue. Your first concern ought then to be placating the discontented, yet you act cruelly, punishing and abusing those who oppose you, at a moment when you can least afford even the image of cruelty. Like Manlius Capitolinus, who extolled falsehoods to the plebs to bring tumult to the city and the Fathers, you extoll such calumnies, many of greater magnitude than Manlius, and you can only expect the same fate should you continue. You sow falsehoods, of fraud and health and all between, in defiance of reality, only to alienate plebeian and patrician alike, losing any popular favor that remains. Without it, your worst fears will be realized and you will fear not only the noble conspiracies of a modern Cassius, but also the common conspiracies of a modern Antony.

My final word, and your final lesson, is how not to waste your position by your own folly, each new action having only enhanced your previous mistakes. Most prominently, your choice of counsel betrays you. Recall, “the first method for estimating the intelligence of a ruler is to look at the men he has around him.” The men who have entered into your employ seem to be mere flatterers, as in Reince Priebus, or savage manipulators, as in Stephen Bannon. Neither are to be desired, for flatterers will cause you to never have the right counsel and manipulators will cause you to lack the right counsel precisely when you need it, both being failures of yours. Beyond those, you have chosen ministers with design to head ministries of which they have no knowledge, Ben Carson and Rick Perry chief among this class, thus filling your government with fools. To take counsel with fools is to be a fool, thus your choices only impress an image of folly upon you.

DO TRUMP SUPPORTERS HAVE A SPECIAL THINKING STYLE?

Written Feb 10 2017
One year in the 1970s, a poor harvest in Brazil led to a shortage of coffee beans and soaring coffee prices in the United States. It also led to an inventive scam beginning with teeny-tiny classified ads in the back pages of magazines. The ads purported to sell coffee trees. Why (they asked) should you depend on those inept Brazilian farmers for one of life’s necessities when you can buy coffee trees, plant them in your own yard, and voila! you’ll have fresh coffee every single day?

Anyone who bought coffee saplings and faced the inevitable disappointment was incapable of grasping the obvious: the United States is a nation of coffee drinkers. So if coffee trees could grow in the U.S. climate, why were we buying coffee from Brazil? Why hadn’t American farmers been raising coffee trees all along? I don’t drink coffee, but even I figured that out.

Trump voters remind me of the Americans who were gullible enough to fall for the coffee-tree scam. Because he has a bottomless need for adoration, Trump told them everything they wanted to hear. That is, taxes will go way down, Hillary will go to jail, high-paying factory jobs will come back to the United States, immigrants will be rounded up and expelled, “radical Islamic terrorism” will never threaten America again, we can be as politically incorrect as we want to be, and “we’re gonna win so much, you’re gonna get tired of winning.”

They lapped it all up because they have a desperate need to believe in magic. Apparently they’ve never asked themselves why, if this wish list is so easy to enact, it hasn’t all been done long, long ago; or if it hasn’t been done, who is responsible and what is their motive in not doing it; and can someone who offers absolutely no specifics really have a plan.

Eight years ago some of the people who eventually voted for Trump were sneering at Democrats, accusing them of regarding Barack Obama as their Messiah. That they have placed the exact same or stronger faith in Trump has escaped them completely.

Written by Angela Stockton

DID WHITE HOUSE STAFF PERSONALLY LIKE PRESIDENT OBAMA?

Author Michael Lewis followed Obama around for six months to write a profile for Vanity Fair. I saw him answer this question at a talk at Berkeley recently and fortunately it was recorded on Youtube. You can watch it on the video around 26:30.

Lewis is a generally a fair and sharp writer but he’s pretty positive about Obama in general after spending a great deal of time with him. Here’s my rough transcript of what he said.

“I will tell you this. The people who work for him love him. Love him. It isn’t worshipful they just really love the guy. And it is because he treats them well. He treats people very well.

“The Secret Service that protect him love him. He wears this watch that’s this goofy looking watch. It looks like a scuba diving watch. Its got all the knobs and you look over it and you expect to see an odometer on it. It is so out of character because everything about him is so spare and minimalist. At some point I said, ‘You know, your watch just doesn’t fit you. It is an odd thing that you have that watch. That watch is a geeky, dorky watch. And you’re kind of cool and that’s kind of odd.’ And he said, ‘I’ll tell you about this watch. When I was running the campaign–the first campaign–Michelle and I just started inviting the Secret Service in. They weren’t getting fed when they were watching me. So we would have them in.’ And they said–I don’t know if I can say this–previous Presidents didn’t treat them that way. And the Secret Service pooled their money to give him this watch. And he wore it because of that.

“He has that kind of loyalty. Not just from the people who protect him but the people who work for him feel that way too. He creates–and I watched him do this for me–a safe place for people to operate in. They don’t feel like they are going to be backstabbed or they are going to be subject to the whims of some kind of whimsical leader. They feel safe with him.

“I could see this because whenever I would walk in a room [while working on the profile], it became an unsafe evironment for the people who were in it. And he was very careful to either say ‘Michael, you’ve got to leave’ or ‘Michael’s here and he’s going to put away his notepad and this is totally off the record.’ So he didn’t pander to me and made it comfortable for the people who worked for him. So he’s that way.”

Written by: James Cham

WILL DONALD BRING BACK COAL MINES

A long time ago, New York had a thriving ice business.

Ice ruled the world before the electric refrigerator. It was necessary for any sort of food preservation outside of canning or drying. Strong, hard working ice men would venture onto the frigid upstate freshwater lakes every winter, carrying giant metal saws. They would break up the thick ice into movable blocks using technique that was likely handed down through generations. Many died out there in the winter wastelands, but they were replaced to complete the necessary winter harvest. The fruit of their labor was taken to caves and storehouses to be preserved through the summer, sating the ever growing demands of New York City and all of the other Hudson Valley communities.

Ice was a community staple. It directly employed thousands. Nobody could have predicted that it would ever be replaced, and the livelihoods of countless people hinged on the market for lake ice. The secondary market was also gigantic. There were the delivery men, distribution companies, steam liners delivering ice to the cities, and manufacturers of ice boxes.

Gas refrigerators existed as early as the 1850s, but real competition came with the electric age. Early household electric fridges started appearing in the 1920s, replacing the ice blocks, the clunky delivery, the hard working ice men, and an entire industry which now looked antiquated and incredibly cumbersome. Today, it is unthinkable that we would have to buy an ice subscription to keep our food cold.

Trump will not bring back coal, any more than he’ll bring back the once thriving ice industry. Coal is dirty, inefficient, polluting and dangerous. As other energy sources beat it on price, it will die just like any other redundant or inefficient industry, and leave the legacy of coal miners in the history books with the ice harvesters.

Nobody but a complete dictator could bring back coal or ice, and then only by forcefully banning the alternatives. None of us want to live in a reality where this is possible.

This isn’t to say society should be heartless. We should retrain those coal workers to do jobs that aren’t obsolete. What we shouldn’t do is pretend that we can uninvent modern society to coerce people into voting for a certain party.

Coal is in its dying days, whether Trump says so or not.

US HOUSE VOTES TO STOP OIL DISCLOSURE REGULATION

Exxon, Chevron face criticism for pushing repeal of SEC rule
For years the oil industry has appealed to the executive branch and courts to de-fang a U.S. rule forcing Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp. and other producers to disclose their payments to foreign governments.

Now, the Republican takeover in Washington is handling it for them.

The House of Representatives is set to vote this week on killing a Securities and Exchange Commission edict that requires publication of overseas payments by oil, natural gas and mining companies. The industry says the rule, part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank act, gives global rivals a competitive edge. Backers say it will help keep payments to foreign nations in government coffers, not private pockets.

“To roll it back would be a complete abdication of U.S. initiative and leadership on issues of corruption,” said Daniel Kaufmann, president of the Natural Resource Governance Institute, an international transparency watchdog.

The SEC rule, set to take effect next year, is one of a series of Obama administration regulations Republican lawmakers are trying to reverse using the Congressional Review Act, a law that allows Congress to undo regulations with a simple majority vote.

Congress also plans to vote this week to kill rules curbing methane venting and mountain-top mining. To do so, both chambers must pass a resolution disapproving the rules, which the president would then have to sign. While President Barack Obama would have reliably vetoed such resolutions, President Donald Trump is likely to sign it.

Trump argues that curbing regulations is key to unleashing investment by U.S. companies. He pledged to rescind two existing regulations for each new one that’s issued.

by Catherine Traywick of Bloomberg News January 30, 2017, 5:00 PM MST