Monday, June 26, 2017

Frank Rich: How Trump's Presidency Will End



Given Trump's character or lack of it, this article's projection about the end of his Presidency sounds just right to me and it can't come soon enough. It's so true that he'd never let in the door at Mar-a-Lago or Trump Tower the kind of people who are his most devoted supporters. It's sad that they don't recognize that fact for themselves:


EXCERPT:

The American University historian Allan Lichtman, famous for his lonely prediction of Trump's electoral victory, has followed up that feat with The Case for Impeachment, a book-length forecast of Trump's doom. The impeachment, he writes, "will be decided not just in the halls of Congress but in the streets of America." I'd go further to speculate that Trump's implosion is more likely to occur before there's an impeachment vote on the floor of the House — as was the case with Nixon. But where Nixon's exit was catalyzed by an empirical recognition that he'd lost the votes he needed to survive a Senate trial, in Trump's case the trigger will be his childish temper, not the facts. He's already on record as finding the job to be more work than he bargained for. He'll tire of being perceived as a loser by nearly everyone except the sort of people he'd never let in the front door of Mar-a-Lago — and of seeing the Trump brand trashed to the point of jeopardizing his children's future stake in the family kleptocracy. When he's had enough, I suspect he'll find a way to declare "victory," blame his departure on a conspiracy by America's (i.e., his) "enemies," and vow to fight another day on a network TBA.

But as was also true with Nixon, some time and much patience will be required while waiting for the endgame. The span between Nixon's Second Inaugural and his resignation was almost 19 months. Trump's presidency already seems as if it's lasted a lifetime, but it's only five months old. Never forget that the Watergate auto-da-fé wasn't built in a day.

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Saturday, June 24, 2017

Ruthless, Soulless, Vicious: Senate GOP's "Health" care bill

by William Rivers Pitt | June 24, 2017 - 5:50am |permalink

— from Truthout

The Senate's answer to the House bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act -- cheerily titled "The Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017" -- hit my desk like a bag of dung late Thursday morning. As I read through its largely inscrutable text, I started flashing back to junior high school and the first time I tried to read Shakespeare in the raw. Take, for one example, this nugget from p. 74, sec. 1903A, lines 18-24: "1903A ENROLLEE. -- The term '1903A enrollee' means, with respect to a State and a month and subject to subsection (i)(1)(B), any Medicaid enrollee (as defined in paragraph (3)) for the month, other than such an enrollee who for such month is in any of the following categories of excluded individuals …"

Clear as mud, Mr. McConnell. After a couple of false starts, I found my groove and with slowly dawning horror realized I was reading one of the most ruthless, soulless, vicious documents ever put to print. While not as bloodthirsty as the House version it seeks to correct, the Better Care Reconciliation Act is a genuinely cruel piece of work that will deliver millions of people to the gutter or the grave.

» article continues...
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Der Spiegel editorial: Donald Trump is a menace to the world

Good to know the Germans are seeing clearly about Trump, although Republicans of our country are not. Yet.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/donald-trump-is-a-menace-to-the-world-opinion-a-1148471.html

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Absolutely Best Essay yet on Trump -- Don't pass it by: The Loneliness of Donald Trump

Rebecca Solnit is a Great writer!  BEST ESSAY YET on Trump and what he is building for himself:  http://lithub.com/rebecca-solnit-the-loneliness-of-donald-trump/


EXCERPT:  


Once upon a time, a child was born into wealth and wanted for nothing, but he was possessed by bottomless, endless, grating, grasping wanting, and wanted more, and got it, and more after that, and always more. He was a pair of ragged orange claws upon the ocean floor, forever scuttling, pinching, reaching for more, a carrion crab, a lobster and a boiling lobster pot in one, a termite, a tyrant over his own little empires. He got a boost at the beginning from the wealth handed him and then moved among grifters and mobsters who cut him slack as long as he was useful, or maybe there's slack in arenas where people live by personal loyalty until they betray, and not by rules, and certainly not by the law or the book. So for seven decades, he fed his appetites and exercised his license to lie, cheat, steal, and stiff working people of their wages, made messes, left them behind, grabbed more baubles, and left them in ruin.

He was supposed to be a great maker of things, but he was mostly a breaker. He acquired buildings and women and enterprises and treated them all alike, promoting and deserting them, running into bankruptcies and divorces, treading on lawsuits the way a lumberjack of old walked across the logs floating on their way to the mill, but as long as he moved in his underworld of dealmakers the rules were wobbly and the enforcement was wobblier and he could stay afloat. But his appetite was endless, and he wanted more, and he gambled to become the most powerful man in the world, and won, careless of what he wished for.

Thinking of him, I think of Pushkin's telling of the old fairytale of The Fisherman and the Golden Fish

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There is Much Truth in this analysis of the Trump Presidency by a Republican conservative

The author uses the perfect word to describe it: PERVERSE
adjective
  1. (of a person or their actions) showing a deliberate and obstinate desire to behave in a way that is unreasonable or unacceptable, often in spite of the consequences.

The Perverse Presidency of Donald Trump

By 

I was mulling, as one does, over this presidency, and something crystallized in my head that I had not quite grasped before. Its policies are best described as simply perverse. The new Senate health-care bill is just the latest shining example. As Peter Suderman explains, it certainly isn't based on any serious conservative ideas about reforming health care; it has no vision of how it wants health care to be organized; the loss of health care for the working poor will be most intense in Republican districts; and, just as important, a huge amount of it is simply kicked into the future — and could easily be forestalled or nullified by future Congresses and presidents. For good measure, by ending many of the taxes in the bill that make it work, and by removing the individual mandate, it risks sending the insurance markets into a deeper crisis.

So what on earth is the point? For Trump, it seems to me, the whole point is to have a "win." He doesn't give a shit about what the bill actually contains. He'll just lie about it afterward and assume his cult followers will believe him. For Ryan, it's just a way to make a future tax cut for the superrich more budget-friendly, while pushing the political costs of shredding Medicaid onto some future sucker.And then you think about those tax cuts Ryan wants so badly. We are told that these cuts will spark so much growth they will pay for themselves — and more. And yet if there is one thing we really do know by now, it is that this strategy has spectacularly failed and failed again to work. Reagan's tax cuts left the U.S. with an unprecedented peacetime deficit; George W. Bush inherited a small surplus and, after his tax cuts didn't spur higher growth, handed Obama a Treasury close to bankrupt. In Kansas, the exact same strategy has incurred so much debt that a supermajority of the legislature, led by Republicans, have junked it. To pursue it a third time on a national scale is the definition of madness.

The only theme I can infer is this: Whatever Obama did, Trump will try to undo.

We are also living in an era of extreme inequality. Any responsible politician would be trying to find a way to ameliorate this, if for no other reason than it is deeply dangerous for the stability of our society and the health of our democracy. And yet the policy of the Republicans is to further increase such inequality to levels beyond even the robber-baron era. Again, the only word for this is … perverse.

Ditto, for that matter, the idea that coal is the future of energy, and that climate change is a hoax. There was absolutely no point in withdrawing from the nonbinding Paris Accord — which is why Trump is now lying by claiming, as he did last Wednesday night, that it was binding. It was an utterly pointless way to isolate the U.S. from the rest of the world, and cede leadership to China. There was really no point at all in trashing the modest opening to Cuba under Obama, poisoning relations, and then just fiddling with the details.

Elsewhere in foreign policy, we have just begun a deepening of the war in Afghanistan, the longest in American history, with no strategy in place. We've also junked the very careful limits that Obama put on the war against ISIS, leading to increasingly dangerous conflict with the Russians. And we now have a broader Middle East policy that has needlessly junked the core gain of the Obama years. The opening to Iran gave the U.S. far more leverage in the region, balancing out our previous Sunni commitments with a Shiite counterweight. Now Trump has fully committed the United States to one side of an intra-Muslim divide, while trashing Qatar, which houses the most important military base in the entire region. Again: perverse.

And what on earth was the purpose of equivocating about the critical commitment to Article 5 of the NATO Treaty, undermining the core underpinning of the Atlantic alliance — and then affirming it anyway? We haven't even gotten commitments to more defense spending from the Europeans, apart from what Obama had managed to get them to agree to already. But what we have achieved is an unprecedented rupture in relations with most of the key European allies.

It is also, frankly, perverse to ignore Russia's blatant attempt to disrupt our elections and to keep reaching out to Putin — when the Congress will rightly deepen sanctions anyway, and Putin will pursue his own ambitions regardless. None of this is coherent strategy, and almost all of it counterproductive.

The only theme I can infer is this: Whatever Obama did, Trump will try to undo. The perversity is the flip side of spite.

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A LIST OF TRUMP'S LIES SINCE TAKING OFFICE


Warning: Not for Fox viewers or those who love to attend Trump rallies, as their closed eyes and plugged ears render them incapable of factual comprehension.

For those who prefer truth to lies, the following list was compiled by the NY Times, with truth included after every lie.  The list only goes up to June 21, so there are many more Trump lies since then, made every time he opens his mouth.
JAN. 21 "I wasn't a fan of Iraq. I didn't want to go into Iraq." (He was for an invasion before he was against it.)JAN. 21 "A reporter for Time magazine — and I have been on their cover 14 or 15 times. I think we have the all-time record in the history of Time magazine." (Trump was on the cover 11 times and Nixon appeared 55 times.)JAN. 23 "Between 3 million and 5 million illegal votes caused me to lose the popular vote." (There's no evidence of illegal voting.)JAN. 25 "Now, the audience was the biggest ever. But this crowd was massive. Look how far back it goes. This crowd was massive." (Official aerial photos show Obama's 2009 inauguration was much more heavily attended.)JAN. 25 "Take a look at the Pew reports (which show voter fraud.)" (The report never mentioned voter fraud.)JAN. 25 "You had millions of people that now aren't insured anymore." (The real number is less than 1 million, according to the Urban Institute.)JAN. 25 "So, look, when President Obama was there two weeks ago making a speech, very nice speech. Two people were shot and killed during his speech. You can't have that." (There were no gun homicide victims in Chicago that day.)JAN. 26 "We've taken in tens of thousands of people. We know nothing about them. They can say they vet them. They didn't vet them. They have no papers. How can you vet somebody when you don't know anything about them and you have no papers? How do you vet them? You can't." (Vetting lasts up to two years.)JAN. 26 "I cut off hundreds of millions of dollars off one particular plane, hundreds of millions of dollars in a short period of time. It wasn't like I spent, like, weeks, hours, less than hours, and many, many hundreds of millions of dollars. And the plane's going to be better." (Most of the cuts were already planned.)JAN. 28 "The coverage about me in the @nytimes and the @washingtonpost has been so false and angry that the Times actually apologized to its dwindling subscribers and readers." (It never apologized.)JAN. 29 "The Cuban-Americans, I got 84 percent of that vote." (There is no support for this.)JAN. 30 "Only 109 people out of 325,000 were detained and held for questioning. Big problems at airports were caused by Delta computer outage." (At least 746 people were detained and processed, and the Delta outage happened two days later.)FEB. 3 "Professional anarchists, thugs and paid protesters are proving the point of the millions of people who voted to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!" (There is no evidence of paid protesters.)FEB. 4 "After being forced to apologize for its bad and inaccurate coverage of me after winning the election, the FAKE NEWS @nytimes is still lost!" (It never apologized.)FEB. 5 "We had 109 people out of hundreds of thousands of travelers and all we did was vet those people very, very carefully." (About 60,000 people were affected.)FEB. 6 "I have already saved more than $700 million when I got involved in the negotiation on the F-35." (Much of the price drop was projected before Trump took office.)FEB. 6 "It's gotten to a point where it is not even being reported. And in many cases, the very, very dishonest press doesn't want to report it." (Terrorism has been reported on, often in detail.)FEB. 6 "The failing @nytimes was forced to apologize to its subscribers for the poor reporting it did on my election win. Now they are worse!" (It didn't apologize.)FEB. 6 "And the previous administration allowed it to happen because we shouldn't have been in Iraq, but we shouldn't have gotten out the way we got out. It created a vacuum, ISIS was formed." (The group's origins date to 2004.)FEB. 7 "And yet the murder rate in our country is the highest it's been in 47 years, right? Did you know that? Forty-seven years." (It was higher in the 1980s and '90s.)FEB. 7 "I saved more than $600 million. I got involved in negotiation on a fighter jet, the F-35." (The Defense Department projected this price drop before Trump took office.)FEB. 9 "Chris Cuomo, in his interview with Sen. Blumenthal, never asked him about his long-term lie about his brave 'service' in Vietnam. FAKE NEWS!" (It was part of Cuomo's first question.)FEB. 9 Sen. Richard Blumenthal "now misrepresents what Judge Gorsuch told him?" (The Gorsuch comments were later corroborated.)FEB. 10 "I don't know about it. I haven't seen it. What report is that?" (Trump knew about Flynn's actions for weeks.)FEB. 12 "Just leaving Florida. Big crowds of enthusiastic supporters lining the road that the FAKE NEWS media refuses to mention. Very dishonest!" (The media did cover it.)FEB. 16 "We got 306 because people came out and voted like they've never seen before so that's the way it goes. I guess it was the biggest Electoral College win since Ronald Reagan." (George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama all won bigger margins in the Electoral College.)FEB. 16 "That's the other thing that was wrong with the travel ban. You had Delta with a massive problem with their computer system at the airports." (Delta's problems happened two days later.)FEB. 16 "Walmart announced it will create 10,000 jobs in the United States just this year because of our various plans and initiatives." (The jobs are a result of its investment plans announced in October 2016.)FEB. 16 "When WikiLeaks, which I had nothing to do with, comes out and happens to give, they're not giving classified information." (Not always. They have released classified information in the past.)FEB. 16 "We had a very smooth rollout of the travel ban. But we had a bad court. Got a bad decision." (The rollout was chaotic.)FEB. 16 "They're giving stuff — what was said at an office about Hillary cheating on the debates. Which, by the way, nobody mentions. Nobody mentions that Hillary received the questions to the debates." (It was widely covered.)FEB. 18 "And there was no way to vet those people. There was no documentation. There was no nothing." (Refugees receive multiple background checks, taking up to two years.)FEB. 18 "You look at what's happening in Germany, you look at what's happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this?" (Trump implied there was a terror attack in Sweden, but there was no such attack.)FEB. 24 "By the way, you folks are in here — this place is packed, there are lines that go back six blocks." (There was no evidence of long lines.)FEB. 24 "ICE came and endorsed me."(Only its union did.)FEB. 24 "Obamacare covers very few people — and remember, deduct from the number all of the people that had great health care that they loved that was taken away from them — it was taken away from them." (Obamacare increased coverage by a net of about 20 million.)FEB. 27 "Since Obamacare went into effect, nearly half of the insurers are stopped and have stopped from participating in the Obamacare exchanges." (Many fewer pulled out.)FEB. 27 "On one plane, on a small order of one plane, I saved $725 million. And I would say I devoted about, if I added it up, all those calls, probably about an hour. So I think that might be my highest and best use." (Much of the price cut was already projected.)FEB. 28 "And now, based on our very strong and frank discussions, they are beginning to do just that." (NATO countries agreed to meet defense spending requirements in 2014.)FEB. 28 "The E.P.A.'s regulators were putting people out of jobs by the hundreds of thousands." (There's no evidence that the Waters of the United States rule caused severe job losses.)FEB. 28 "We have begun to drain the swamp of government corruption by imposing a five-year ban on lobbying by executive branch officials." (They can't lobby their former agency but can still become lobbyists.)MARCH 3 "It is so pathetic that the Dems have still not approved my full Cabinet." (Paperwork for the last two candidates was still not submitted to the Senate.)MARCH 4 "Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my 'wires tapped' in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!" (There's no evidence of a wiretap.)MARCH 4 "How low has President Obama gone to tap my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!"(There's no evidence of a wiretap.)MARCH 7 "122 vicious prisoners, released by the Obama Administration from Gitmo, have returned to the battlefield. Just another terrible decision!" (113 of them were released by President George W. Bush.)MARCH 13 "I saved a lot of money on those jets, didn't I? Did I do a good job? More than $725 million on them." (Much of the cost cuts were planned before Trump.)MARCH 13 "First of all, it covers very few people." (About 20 million people gained insurance under Obamacare.)MARCH 15 "On the airplanes, I saved $725 million. Probably took me a half an hour if you added up all of the times." (Much of the cost cuts were planned before Trump.)MARCH 17 "I was in Tennessee — I was just telling the folks — and half of the state has no insurance company, and the other half is going to lose the insurance company." (There's at least one insurer in every Tennessee county.)MARCH 20 "With just one negotiation on one set of airplanes, I saved the taxpayers of our country over $700 million." (Much of the cost cuts were planned before Trump.)MARCH 21 "To save taxpayer dollars, I've already begun negotiating better contracts for the federal government — saving over $700 million on just one set of airplanes of which there are many sets." (Much of the cost cuts were planned before Trump.)MARCH 22 "I make the statement, everyone goes crazy. The next day they have a massive riot, and death, and problems." (Riots in Sweden broke out two days later and there were no deaths.)MARCH 22 "NATO, obsolete, because it doesn't cover terrorism. They fixed that." (It has fought terrorism since the 1980s.)MARCH 22 "Well, now, if you take a look at the votes, when I say that, I mean mostly they register wrong — in other words, for the votes, they register incorrectly and/or illegally. And they then vote. You have tremendous numbers of people." (There's no evidence of widespread voter fraud.)MARCH 29 "Remember when the failing @nytimes apologized to its subscribers, right after the election, because their coverage was so wrong. Now worse!" (It didn't apologize.)MARCH 31 "We have a lot of plants going up now in Michigan that were never going to be there if I — if I didn't win this election, those plants would never even think about going back. They were gone." (These investments were already planned.)APRIL 2 "And I was totally opposed to the war in the Middle East which I think finally has been proven, people tried very hard to say I wasn't but you've seen that it is now improving." (He was for an invasion before he was against it.)APRIL 2 "Now, my last tweet — you know, the one that you are talking about, perhaps — was the one about being, in quotes, wiretapped, meaning surveilled. Guess what, it is turning out to be true." (There is still no evidence.)APRIL 5 "You have many states coming up where they're going to have no insurance company. O.K.? It's already happened in Tennessee. It's happening in Kentucky. Tennessee only has half coverage. Half the state is gone. They left." (Every marketplace region in Tennessee had at least one insurer.)APRIL 6 "If you look at the kind of cost-cutting we've been able to achieve with the military and at the same time ordering vast amounts of equipment — saved hundreds of millions of dollars on airplanes, and really billions, because if you take that out over a period of years it's many billions of dollars — I think we've had a tremendous success." (Much of the price cuts were already projected.)APRIL 11 "I like Steve, but you have to remember he was not involved in my campaign until very late. I had already beaten all the senators and all the governors, and I didn't know Steve." (He knew Steve Bannon since 2011.)APRIL 12 "You can't do it faster, because they're obstructing. They're obstructionists. So I have people — hundreds of people that we're trying to get through. I mean you have — you see the backlog. We can't get them through." (At this point, he had not nominated anyone for hundreds of positions.)APRIL 12 "The New York Times said the word wiretapped in the headline of the first edition. Then they took it out of there fast when they realized." (There were separate headlines for print and web, but neither were altered.)APRIL 12 "The secretary general and I had a productive discussion about what more NATO can do in the fight against terrorism. I complained about that a long time ago and they made a change, and now they do fight terrorism." (NATO has been engaged in counterterrorism efforts since the 1980s.)APRIL 12 "Mosul was supposed to last for a week and now they've been fighting it for many months and so many more people died." (The campaign was expected to take months.)APRIL 16 "Someone should look into who paid for the small organized rallies yesterday. The election is over!" (There's no evidence of paid protesters.)APRIL 18 "The fake media goes, 'Donald Trump changed his stance on China.' I haven't changed my stance." (He did.)APRIL 21 "On 90 planes I saved $725 million. It's actually a little bit more than that, but it's $725 million." (Much of the price cuts were already projected.)APRIL 21 "When WikiLeaks came out … never heard of WikiLeaks, never heard of it." (He criticized it as early as 2010.)APRIL 27 "I want to help our miners while the Democrats are blocking their healthcare." (The bill to extend health benefits for certain coal miners was introduced by a Democrat and was co-sponsored by mostly Democrats.)APRIL 28 "The trade deficit with Mexico is close to $70 billion, even with Canada it's $17 billion trade deficit with Canada." (The U.S. had an $8.1 billion trade surplus, not deficit, with Canada in 2016.)APRIL 28 "She's running against someone who's going to raise your taxes to the sky, destroy your health care, and he's for open borders — lots of crime." (Those are not Jon Ossoff's positions.)APRIL 28 "The F-35 fighter jet program — it was way over budget. I've saved $725 million plus, just by getting involved in the negotiation." (Much of the price cuts were planned before Trump.)APRIL 29 "They're incompetent, dishonest people who after an election had to apologize because they covered it, us, me, but all of us, they covered it so badly that they felt they were forced to apologize because their predictions were so bad." (The Times did not apologize.)APRIL 29 "As you know, I've been a big critic of China, and I've been talking about currency manipulation for a long time. But I have to tell you that during the election, number one, they stopped." (China stopped years ago.)APRIL 29 "I've already saved more than $725 million on a simple order of F-35 planes. I got involved in the negotiation." (Much of the price cuts were planned before Trump.)APRIL 29 "We're also getting NATO countries to finally step up and contribute their fair share. They've begun to increase their contributions by billions of dollars, but we are not going to be satisfied until everyone pays what they owe." (The deal was struck in 2014.)APRIL 29 "When they talk about currency manipulation, and I did say I would call China, if they were, a currency manipulator, early in my tenure. And then I get there. Number one, they — as soon as I got elected, they stopped." (China stopped in 2014.)APRIL 29 "I was negotiating to reduce the price of the big fighter jet contract, the F-35, which was totally out of control. I will save billions and billions and billions of dollars." (Most of the cuts were planned before Trump.)APRIL 29 "I think our side's been proven very strongly. And everybody's talking about it." (There's still no evidence Trump's phones were tapped.)MAY 1 "Well, we are protecting pre-existing conditions. And it'll be every good — bit as good on pre-existing conditions as Obamacare." (The bill weakens protections for people with pre-existing conditions.)MAY 1 "The F-35 fighter jet — I saved — I got involved in the negotiation. It's 2,500 jets. I negotiated for 90 planes, lot 10. I got $725 million off the price." (Much of the price cuts were planned before Trump.)MAY 1 "First of all, since I started running, they haven't increased their — you know, they have not manipulated their currency. I think that was out of respect to me and the campaign." (China stopped years ago.)MAY 2 "I love buying those planes at a reduced price. I have been really — I have cut billions — I have to tell you this, and they can check, right, Martha? I have cut billions and billions of dollars off plane contracts sitting here." (Much of the cost cuts were planned before Trump.)MAY 4 "Number two, they're actually not a currency [manipulator]. You know, since I've been talking about currency manipulation with respect to them and other countries, they stopped." (China stopped years ago.)MAY 4 "We're the highest-taxed nation in the world." (We're not.)MAY 4 "Nobody cares about my tax return except for the reporters." (Polls show most Americans do care.)MAY 8 "You know we've gotten billions of dollars more in NATO than we're getting. All because of me." (The deal was struck in 2014.)MAY 8 "But when I did his show, which by the way was very highly rated. It was high — highest rating. The highest rating he's ever had." (Colbert's "Late Show" debut had nearly two million more viewers.)MAY 8 "Director Clapper reiterated what everybody, including the fake media already knows — there is 'no evidence' of collusion w/ Russia and Trump." (Clapper only said he wasn't aware of an investigation.)MAY 12 "Again, the story that there was collusion between the Russians & Trump campaign was fabricated by Dems as an excuse for losing the election." (The F.B.I. was investigating before the election.)MAY 12 "When James Clapper himself, and virtually everyone else with knowledge of the witch hunt, says there is no collusion, when does it end?" (Clapper said he wouldn't have been told of an investigation into collusion.)MAY 13 "I'm cutting the price of airplanes with Lockheed." (The cost cuts were planned before he became president.)MAY 26 "Just arrived in Italy for the G7. Trip has been very successful. We made and saved the USA many billions of dollars and millions of jobs." (He's referencing an arms deal that's not enacted and other apparent deals that weren't announced on the trip.)JUNE 1 "China will be allowed to build hundreds of additional coal plants. So, we can't build the plants, but they can, according to this agreement. India will be allowed to double its coal production by 2020." (The agreement doesn't allow or disallow building coal plants.)JUNE 1 "I've just returned from a trip overseas where we concluded nearly $350 billion of military and economic development for the United States, creating hundreds of thousands of jobs." (Trump's figures are inflated and premature.)JUNE 4 "At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is 'no reason to be alarmed!'" (The mayor was specifically talking about the enlarged police presence on the streets.)JUNE 5 "The Justice Dept. should have stayed with the original Travel Ban, not the watered down, politically correct version they submitted to S.C." (Trump signed this version of the travel ban, not the Justice Department.)JUNE 21 "They all say it's 'nonbinding.' Like hell it's nonbinding." (The Paris climate agreement is nonbinding — and Trump said so in his speech announcing the withdrawal.)JUNE 21 "Right now, we are one of the highest-taxed nations in the world." (We're not.)

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Friday, June 23, 2017

INCREDIBLE! Bill Cosby planning to tour country teaching about sexual assault!

More insanity from the times we are living in. Not only do we have a sexual predator as President, but now it is OK for sexual predators to tour the country and advise others on how to avoid going to court on charges:

Obscene: Bill Cosby Planning To Tour Country Teaching About Sexual Assault
  
by Kali Holloway | June 23, 2017 

— from Alternet

According to two of his spokespeople, Bill Cosby is planning to tour the country holding seminars on sexual assault, and more specifically, how to avoid going to court on charges. Cosby flacks Andrew Wyatt and Ebonee Benson appeared on "Good Morning Alabama" on Tuesday to announce that Cosby is "ready to get back to work" following a mistrial in his sexual assault case. He plans to do that by lecturing young people about the best way to avoid being accused of sex abuse.

"We are now planning town halls, and we're going to be coming to this city sometime in July," Wyatt said in the segment, below. "We'll talk to young people, because this is bigger than Bill Cosby. This issue can affect any young person, especially young athletes of today, and they need to know what they're facing when they're hanging out and partying. When they're doing certain things that they shouldn't be doing."

Wyatt chuckled as he stated that the lesson "affects married men, too." Kudos to host Janice Rodgers for walking right through the door Wyatt accidentally left open.

"Is it kind of a do as I say and not as I do situation?" the host asked, leaving Wyatt visibly stunned and too taken off guard to come up with a quick response.

Benson contributed by pushing the bunk idea that rape and sexual assault are overprosecuted, with accusations made in cases that clearly don't meet the bar. She also suggested that since whiny rape survivors are so insistent on seeking justice, days and even years after their lives have been irreversibly affected by sexual assault, people have to be wary.

"Laws are changing. The statutes for victims of sexual assault are being extended," Benson added. "So this is why people need to be educated on a brush against the shoulder—anything at this point can be considered sexual assault, and it's a good thing to be educated about the law."

The outlet Deadline spoke about Cosby's planned tour with Gloria Allred, who is "representing several other women among the more than 60 who have said that Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted them." She didn't mince words in calling out the ridiculousness of the undertaking.

"Mr. Cosby's so-called workshops appear to be a transparent and slick effort to attempt to influence the jury pool from which jurors will be selected for his second criminal trial," Allred told the outlet. "Mr. Cosby should understand, however, that this is not about optics...It is about evidence and according to news reports at least 10 jurors out of 12 voted to convict him on one felony count."

"Under the circumstances Mr. Cosby should not be conducting sex assault workshops, but if he does do them then the best advice he can give to those attending is that if you do not drug and sexually assault women, then you need not worry about being charged with a crime," Allred added.
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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

In news today: More proof that JFK was killed by assassins from the front, not by Oswald

Most of us who never believed the "official" report knew this almost from the start.  Many of the doctors who worked on Kennedy described two entrance wounds in the front, with one bullet blowing out a huge hole in the back of his head. Which means the bullets came from the grassy knoll, not from the schoolbook depository where Oswald worked.  But you'd never know this from the "official" story sold to the world  by the investigation committee. They even doctored the "official" autopsy photos to appear that the back of Kennedy's head was intact, with every hair in place. 

Don't you wonder who really killed him?  And why? This makes all the so-called "conspiracy" stories begin to sound worthy of more investigation by authorities, doesn't it? You'd think the government would want a truthful answer for history.  Yeah, right.  Don't hold  your breath waiting for that to happen.  Lee Harvey Oswald was the patsy whose name will never be cleared.
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Sunday, June 18, 2017

Excerpt from a new book--can you guess who it's about?

Excerpt from a new book by Howard Jacobson, written in the form of a fairytale:

REVELATION
And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea ...

And the beast which I saw was like unto a hyena; and his feet were as the feet of a clown; and his face was as the face of a spoiled child ...

And the people gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority ...

And they worshipped the beast, saying: Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?

And there was given unto him a mouth speaking foolish things ...

And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against truth ...

And it shall come to pass that all who dwell upon the earth shall wonder that they worshipped him ...

And they shall know that the beast came not out of the sea but their own hearts ...

And they shall fear that once let out, the beast will never be persuaded to go back in again.
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Saturday, June 17, 2017

Touching message by Rev. Wm. Barber - not to be missed!

In case you missed it, here is a straight-to-the-heart reminder given by Rev. Barber to all Americans today on the AM Joy show.  Worth viewing many times over. 

http://crooksandliars.com/2017/06/preach-rev-barber-takes-us-church-after

This morning, Joy Reid said what many of us were thinking this week:

"After this week's shooting in a GOP congressional baseball practice left Democrats and Republicans calling for unity, rallying around Congressman Steve Scalise, who still remains in the hospital, in critical condition," she said.

"But despite the current kumbaya, the political divisions are still very real and have moral implications. Who better to discuss than Dr. William Barber? If ever I needed a pastor, Reverend, today is the day.

"This idea that Republicans now have, they're saying that we all have to come together. We have to rally together. When you heard them saying that, what did you hear?"

"Well, first of all, we should be in prayer," Barber said.

"We should be unified in our concern for the congressman and the two officers that were wounded. But first, we should also be deeply concerned about the three people who were killed on the same day. Representative ryan said, 'When you attack one of us, you attack all of us. Well, this can't just be a moral ethic that you apply to members of Congress.

"That's why the real question is, will one or two days of changes in personality mean a fundamental change in public policy? That's the moral question.

"I've been thinking about this, Joy. All of those that were injured needed health care. So now will they go back to work and say, every American deserves health care, deserves what we received, and we will preserve the Affordable Care Act and make sure pre-existing conditions are protected?"

(Yes! That's something may of us have said.)

"Since they could have died, will they repent of efforts to take money from Medicaid that will help poor people and disabled, many of whom have died without that? A black man from my alma mater saved their lives," he said.

"Will they go back to work and restore the Voting Rights Act and stop systemic racism against black people? A lesbian black woman saved them. Will they go back to work and no longer promote laws that attack the human rights of LBGTQ communities?

"They were shot by guns allowed to be carried openly. Will they go back and challenge laws that allow people to get guns easily so they can get votes? They were shot by a white middle-aged man for political reasons. will they change the practice of profiling terrorism as a fear of Muslims and violence that's mainly rooted in the urban black area.

"Tone is fine, but if the policies are terrible, we don't have civility," he warned.

"They were saved by good police, so will they therefore challenge bad police like the guy in the (Philando) Castile case?

"These are the serious moral questions that have to be answered more than just one or two days of shaking hands and playing a game. because this is really not a game.

"It's a delicate thing, because everybody is wishing the congressman well and hoping that he recovers, but Steve Scalise has a history that we've all been forced to sort of ignore on race," Reid pointed out.

She reminded viewers Scalise came to leadership after a controversy over attending a white nationalist event, his co-sponsorship not just of a bill for a constitutional amendment limiting marriage to that between men and women, but also a repeal of the ban on semiautomatic weapons.

"Because he is in jeopardy and everybody is pulling for him, are we required in a moral sense to put that aside in the moment? " she asked.

"What we're required to say is, we hope he recovers and when he recovers, he's got a new mind-set. If a lesbian person saved your life, you should not go forward being homophobic. You shouldn't be, anyway.

"If you almost died, but your life was saved because you got health care, you should apply that ethic and want everybody else to have the same health care you have. The Bible, one of the guys that prayed, (Rep. Mark) Walker from North Carolina, he was saying how he prayed for everybody.

"The Bible says in Isaiah 10, woe to those that legislate evil and rob the poor of their rights and make women and children their prey.

"The Bible says, wherever you just put on a face in a time of crisis, but continue to do the same thing, it's called making graves look good that are still full of dead men's bones.

"In other words, it's hypocrisy. If congresspeople pray for one another, and they should P-R-A-Y, but then if they pass policies that prey, P-R-E-Y, on the poor and the minorities and the sick, then we have a serious moral problem.

"And even our Constitution, the way you can get to domestic tranquility, the only way you can get to civility, is you must start with the establishment of justice. You must provide for the common good and you must provide the general welfare. Changing the tone of words is not enough.

"You have to have a change in the trajectory of policy. prayer is not enough. Faith must have works. So I'm praying that the brother gives up and lives and then comes back and says, 'This experience has changed my thinking fundamentally, not just about myself, but about the policies I support.'

"And lastly, Joy, they talked about raising $1 million for charity. That is good. But if you turn around and take $600 billion from the poor and the least of these, and you don't pay a vote to give people a living wage, personal privatized charity is not going to solve our social problems when it comes to the poor and the uplifting of the least of these."

They continued to a discussion of the hopelessness many of us feel this morning after the verdict in the Philando Castile murder.

"What would you say in response to the sort of feeling of few tilt and hopelessness that I think a lot of us feel, a lot of people feel, when you have an instance of police-involved violence, that there's really actually no hope of justice for the family. What do you say to people that feel that way?" Reid said.

The reverend said in moments of despair, he read and studied people who faced other seemingly hopeless moments.

"Now, I wish that the moral universe argument bent quicker and I wish we didn't have to have the suffering. but what we can't do is ever give up," he said.

"On our own humanity. On our own standing for what's right, even if right does not come fast, quick, and in a hurry. And there is a legacy of doing that.

"You know, I remember, Joy, when I was reading the other day, I went to the store the other day, and (civil rights martyr James) Cheney's nephew worked on my cell phone. And we were talking about that.

"When they were killed, the young people didn't come out of Mississippi. They went to Mississippi. And so I believe we're going to need continued seasons of non-violent resistance.

"Don't quit, don't give up, continue to stand, because we must honor the lives of those that have been slain violently by bad police for standing up for what's right."

EVERYBODY SAY AMEN.

Don't give up. Every single moral action has a ripple effect.

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