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R.G.’s Roundup: Border Wall, NAFTA, and Media Fatigue

Our favorite political reads of the week.

By Comments

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Beyond here, there be dragons—or at least the most interesting articles I’ve read this week by other writers.

Courtesy of the McAllen Monitor

Presidential bluster and blunder – haste for a wall and trade war with Mexico loom
Editorial board, McAllen Monitor

In the first weeks of his presidential administration, Donald Trump threw out the Trans Pacific Partnership, said he will renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, declared he will impose a 20-percent fee on imports from Mexico to pay for a border wall, and told Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto that U.S. military forces will handle “bad hombres down there” if the Mexican authorities don’t. Can we be surprised that the editorial board of the McAllen Monitor is nervous?

The power of democracy is the notion that those elected to office must constantly assess the impact of his or her actions in relation to the next election. This circumspection benefits us all because public policy decisions are weighed and the full impact of those decisions are considered before the policy is implemented. But as the Monitor notes:

But President Trump seems not to consider such implications. It may reflect his own sense of certitude, but the potential for collateral damage is too great.

Take the case of the border wall and what it has already done with our relationship with Mexico — a relationship that has a direct impact on the Rio Grande Valley.

It’s shades of J.J. “Black Jack” Pershing going after Pancho Villa in 1916 and 1917 during the Mexican Revolution.  After Villa’s forces attacked Columbus, New Mexico, and , Pershing invaded Mexico on the orders of President Woodrow Wilson in pursuit of Villa’s army. Pershing defeated the irregulars, but Villa escaped. The U.S. troops were forced to withdraw when the Mexican government threatened to use its own army against Pershing.

It’s Time for Texas Leaders to Defend NAFTA
Editorial board, Tyler Morning Telegraph

So maybe it’s no surprise that a border newspaper like the Monitor is worried by Trump’s policies on trade, but go north to Tyler, a city that is just about as Republican as you can get in Texas. The Tyler Morning Telegraph notes that a new NAFTA could disrupt sectors of the U.S. economy:

And that would be disastrous for Texas. Texas companies, big and small, export a total of $92.5 billion worth of goods to Mexico each year. That figure dwarfs second-place California, which exports just $26.8 billion of goods…

It’s time for the Texas delegation to Washington to stand up and say they won’t support Trump’s short-sighted attempts to kill NAFTA. Ditching NAFTA would be a mistake.

Is their congressman, Republican Louie Gohmert, listening?

Minority Leadership in Dallas is Changing
By Jim Schutze, Dallas Observer

A lot of journalists can tell you what happened, but more rare is the one who can tell you what is happening. The Observer’s Jim Schutze is among those with an eye on the trends, and he tells us here about a generational change in Dallas’ African-American political community:

Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price, scheduled to go on trial later this month on federal corruption charges, is still king of the city’s old black protesters. But the old black protest machine’s days as a major political force in the city probably are numbered anyway, no matter which way the judge’s gavel falls.

One indicator closely watched by insiders was the selection this week of state Rep. Eric Johnson of District 100 in West Dallas, South Dallas and parts of East Dallas, to head the Dallas Democratic legislative delegation during this year’s session of the Legislature, replacing Rep. Helen Giddings of District 109 in Cedar Hill, DeSoto and Lancaster.

There is one sentence in the story that reminded me of something I saw during the Democratic presidential primaries last year. While Hillary Clinton had the old guard of the civil rights movement, people who deserve honor, many of the young black intellectuals were throwing their support to Bernie Sanders. As Schutze says about the Dallas community: “If I had to come up with a one-sentence summary of the ones in that group whom I have met, I would say they are a little tired of hearing the old guard’s war stories and are very impatient for more substantive change.”

How to Live with Media Fatigue
By Christopher Mele, The New York Times

If you’re still reading, this may not apply to you. The other day on my Facebook feed, I asked whether President Trump’s rapid move from one crisis in the media to another was part of some plan to create protest fatigue early in his administration. But then someone else I know declared they were going to have to stop watching the news to save their sanity. This Times piece explores ways to deal with the shock and awe of our fast-moving media world in the age of Trump:

It feels as if we are living in a Superconducting Super Collider of news, with information bombarding us at a head-spinning velocity. The result is a fatigue about the headlines — lately about politics — that has prompted some people to withdraw from the news, or curb their consumption of it…

Experts said they had not seen data to conclude that consumers had changed their habits to protect their mental health, but added that the news ecosystem had changed drastically over the past five years, accelerating the sense of information overload.

Please, do some jumping jacks, a little meditation, yoga, and keep reading Texas Monthly.

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  • donuthin2

    Coach Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs was asked to give his thoughts on Black History Month before the game last evening. You can google to see them as they have been quoted in numerous outlets. He is an amazing coach and we are privileged to have him in Texas. The Spurs are what athletics should look like as they are a great example of team players who get it done.

  • WUSRPH

    One good thing that could come out of Trump killing NAFTA or starting a trade war with Mexico—-it will reduce some of the traffic on IH 35. See, there is always a sliver lining.

    Trump’s talking about “bad hombres down there” sounds like a fourth grader trying to mimic Woodrow Wilson during the Mexican Revolution…..Maybe we can seize Vera Cruz (again) and teach them how to run a good government, like Wilson said he was going to do when he did it in 1916.

    • John Bernard Books

      What do you think ruthless drug lords are….good hombres?

    • BCinBCS

      There seems to be a controversy that needs to be clarified. Various media and commenters (at BB and elsewhere) are not sure of the grade level at which Comrade Trump operates. I have read statements that peg it anywhere from the second grade to the eighth grade. I implore those that want to weigh in on this observation to not take your opinions lightly but consider seriously at exactly what grade level he should be described. After all, the whole world is watching.

      • John Johnson

        I implore you to take a deep breath and get a grip. “Some commentators”???

        Your neighbor, who stayed at a Holiday Inn Express, said you are an idiot. I implore all your neighbors to observe you closer and chime in.

        • BCinBCS

          Embarrassed about your boy, are you?

          • John Johnson

            Not sure where you conjured that up from. Couldn’t be happier.

          • BCinBCS

            I’m embarrassed for you.

  • BCinBCS

    Another article that came out this week was one about the future of electric vehicles (EV) and the future of oil. Since oil is big in Texas, this new prediction has ramifications for everyone in the state.

    Vox reported on a new study by the Grantham Institute for Imperial College London and the Carbon Tracker Initiative which states that “solar photovoltaics (PV) and EVs together will kick fossil fuel’s ass, quickly”. It predicts that “EVs could make up a third of the road transport market by 2035, more than half the market by 2040, and more than two thirds of market share by 2050″ and that “Oil demand could be flat from 2020 to 2030 then fall steadily to 2050”.

    These forecasts have some weight behind them but do run counter to other, especially oil company, forecasts. But, as Vox points out: “If these forecasts play out, fossil fuels could lose 10 percent market share to PV and EVs within a decade. A 10 percent loss in market share was enough to send the US coal industry spiraling, enough to cause Europe’s utilities to hemorrhage money. It could seriously disrupt life for the oil majors. “Growth in EVs alone could lead to 2 million barrels of oil per day being displaced by 2025,” the study says, “the same volume that caused the oil price collapse in 2014-15.

    More anxiety for your weekend. 😉

    • SpiritofPearl

      Our roof has an array of solar panels. No muss, no fuss and the electric bills are a joy to behold.

    • John Johnson

      They have been touting elec vehicles for how long now? Natural gas requires no refining. From ground, through a dryer and into use, to produce either electricity or to drive vehicles. No batteries which require special disposal. Quick refueling as opposed to the time it takes to charge a battery. Natural gas is also cheaper than electricity that is produced using it. I could go on. You have a proclivity to believe everything you read…if it agrees with your position.

      • donuthin2

        I wish it were easier to use Natural Gas, but in spite of what you say, service stations are not convenient, gas must be kept under significant pressure, miles per fill up is short, and all of your trunk space is filled with a tank. We will see in 15 years or so, which has prevailed.

        • John Johnson

          where do you think those big batteries go?

          • donuthin2

            Depends on how the technology develops. Actually the technology for electric powered vehicles is advancing faster than the technology for natural gas. Not sure why.

          • John Johnson

            NG is sitting in its natural state and ready to use. What technology developments do we need?

            Interstate NG fueling for Big riggs would be easier than trying to put slow, electrical plugs ins everywhere. Get big freight haulers on NG and then we export diesel. Seems like the smartest place to start toward total energy dependency.

            We aren’t going there because Big Oil will take a hit. Hedging will take a hit. That’s my take.

          • BCinBCS

            I am not an expert on electric powered vehicles but I read a lot about them and have not read of any extensive plans for battery powered long-haul trucks even though this is the one area where it would make the most sense due to the high total cost of fuel.

          • John Johnson

            Wrong. It makes no sense.

          • BCinBCS

            Actually it does make sense.

            I took me awhile but I found this from Trucks.com:

            Heavy long-haul trucks are the kings of fuel consumption. That’s why they are the best target for electrification from an economic standpoint. A 40-ton long-haul truck driving at 60 mph uses eight to 13 gallons of diesel per hour, according to a comprehensive survey from Sweden. This is $20 to $30 per hour, or in places like Britain, where the cost of diesel is higher, $40 to $60 per hour. This makes fuel costs higher than a driver’s salary on a per-hour basis, and is the largest percentage cost item for trucking companies on a monthly basis. If fuel costs can be cut in half by switching to electricity, electrification can be very interesting indeed for a truck operator.

            https://www.trucks.com/2016/09/01/electric-long-haul-trucks-profitable/

          • John Johnson

            It might in Europe, where this piece was written; it doesn’t here. All their fuel is imported and much more expensive than ours.

          • SpiritofPearl

            My neighborhood has many homes with solar panels. An environmental non-profit made an arrangement so that solar owners could buy Volts at a reduced price. The cars are powered with the home’s solar panels since our panels make more energy than our homes use. This way the unused energy is not turned back over to Austin Energy.

          • SpiritofPearl

            When we bought our house, any excess energy our panels generated was put back into the grid and we were given a refund at the end of the year. Austin Energy wasn’t making enough money with that system, so they stopped giving refunds. That’s when the neighbors rebelled. Some bought Volts as a way to store the excess energy rather than turn it over to AE.

          • BCinBCS

            Those batteries form the floor of the vehicle. They are not stored in the trunk (except on home build retro-kits).

          • John Johnson

            Stop it. They batteries weigh a ton. They take up space. They are toxic and need special disposal handling, and, and, and…

          • BCinBCS

            And we (and Oklahoma) know that there’s absolutely no waste or downsides to natural gas and other fossil fuels.

          • John Johnson

            Name those associated with natural gas.

          • vietvet3

            The giant downside and colossal waste associated with NG is fracking. Or rather the waste water disposal. I’m not referring to the 500% increase in earthquakes in Oklahoma. Fracking requires that millions upon millions of gallons of contaminated, toxic water be pumped into deep wells. That water is forever lost to human use. That is completely different than any previous water use. When I wash my car or flush or drink a beer, that water will eventually make its way back to the atmosphere as pure H2O. That is not the case with waste water disposal wells. Forever lost. And this mindless waste brings us gasoline and NG about 25% cheaper than it it would be otherwise. Classic “penny wise and pound foolish.” Our Grandchildren will pay for our shortsightedness.

          • John Johnson

            Big changes coming for production water cleanup.

          • John Bernard Books

            JJ with technology and America being great again, we can do anything. Do you know how angry this makes the looney?

          • vietvet3

            Great! I hope that’s not an alternative fact. I’m not hopeful after seeing that among Trump’s first actions was to allow coal waste to flow into streams and rivers. Also very impressed that you are calling toxic waste “production water.”
            `Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
            Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
            All mimsy were the borogoves,
            And the mome raths outgrabe.

          • BCinBCS

            JJ asked: “Name those [downside] associated with natural gas.

            Methane, a greenhouse gas, for one.

  • BCinBCS

    If there is one thing that I have learned about politics it’s that most lies are soon found out

    When the American SEAL team along with UAE Special Forces attacked an Al Qaeda compound January 29th, Comrade Trump/Bannon declared it a success by all standards. Despite the death of one Navy SEAL, information that came out later showed that the mission was compromised, that women and children were killed and that a $75,000,000.00 Osprey aircraft was lost. In an attempt to demonstrate that all of these losses weren’t for nothing, a video found on one of the captured computers that demonstrates how to prepare a bomb was posted by the U.S. Unfortunately, this “new” information turned out to be bomb making instructions that have been on the internet for a decade.

    So much for the success.

  • BCinBCS

    Two months into Comrade Trump/Bannon’s administration and we’ve pissed off:

    Mexico
    Canada
    China
    Iran
    Australia
    and apparently now…
    Germany

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f484a2a52352ee0175199a4d36bd67a1415c5ef49c88f4232a0f9315d96f4c2a.jpg
    .

  • John Bernard Books

    If you’re like me you can’t wait to get up in the morning….everyday is like Christmas:
    “As long as we’re talking Supreme Court nominations, what about the next one?”
    http://hotair.com/archives/2017/02/03/supreme-court-nominations-ruth-bader-ginsburg/
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e460e05d4ba6cc503b9f0e6ae8bd7bc6a4d45a8298906bd20ce2213087522ee1.jpg

  • John Bernard Books

    I asked my liberal friend why dems haven’t won a statewide race in over 20 years…
    “Yesterday I asked my most liberal, Trump-hating friend if he ever figured out why Republicans have most of the Governorships, a majority in Congress, the White House, and soon the Supreme Court. He said, “There are no easy answers.”
    I submit that there are easy answers. But for many Americans, cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias hide those easy answers behind Hitler hallucinations.”
    http://truthfeed.com/breaking-uc-berkeley-loses-major-donor/50326/

    Never voted dem and never will…

  • BCinBCS

    The average pay-back time for the purchase of solar panels is seven and one-half years in the United States. It doesn’t matter what the cost of the panels is when their cost in relation to the price of electricity allows them to be purchased free and clear after less than eight years. Panels have a 25 year average life span so they are much better investments than luxury cars that cost about the same amount.

    • SpiritofPearl

      Our house had panels when we bought it. The only maintenance seems to be to install pigeon barriers.

    • John Johnson

      If you think you are going to be alive for a longtime.

  • BCinBCS

    It seems to have by-passed BB but Kellyanne Conway’s reminder of the Bowling Green Massacre (that Fredrick Douglas refused to condemn) has produced a lot of comments on other blogs.

    Do you remember where you were and what you were doing when it happened?

    • WUSRPH

      It happened in that alternative universe of alternative facts in which she lives..

      • John Johnson

        “We were fired upon in Bosnia.”

        • BCinBCS

          Hillary is not in the White House; Comrade Trump, white nationalist Bannon and “alternative facts” Kellyanne Conway are.

          • John Johnson

            Leave it to your Daddy to debate for you; you’re not too good at it.

          • WUSRPH

            You mean like when Reagan said he was there when the death camps in Germany were liberated? We now know it was early Alzheimers. At the time, we thought he was just a little weird.

          • John Johnson

            Let me get this straight…you think Hillary has Alzheimer’s or is she just a chronic liar?

          • BCinBCS

            JJ, you have some major cojones dredging up a Hillary lie from 2008 when your boy tells multiple lies daily.

          • John Johnson

            Looks to me that we have a bunch of liars in public office these days.

          • WUSRPH

            And you’re proud of that…..at least you keep promoting the biggest one.

          • WUSRPH

            Not sure about Hillary…..no enough evidence…..but we sure know about your boy and his chronic, consistent, deliberate manufacturing of alternative truths.

          • John Johnson

            Better learn to live with it.

          • WUSRPH

            The question is not whether I can live with it….The question is how long the American people and the Congress will tolerate it and what damage it will do to us and to our position in the world.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Still lighting a candle to the Virgin of Guadalupe to honor the victims of the Bowling Green massacre . . . dreadful loss of life.

  • BCinBCS

    Good news. Our democracy seems to be holding.

    Comrade Trump/Bannon issued an executive order (you know, those orders that were supposed to be unconstitutional when Obama was President) preventing all immigrants from entering the U.S. from seven countries. U.S. District Judge James L. Robart from Washington state temporarily blocked the ban for the entire U.S. Of course Comrade Trump had a twitter melt-down Saturday morning but true to our democratic principles, the State Department complied with the Judicial Branch of our government and reversed its revocation of entry visas.

    Maybe there is still hope.

    As Pearl says: “Resist”.

  • BCinBCS

    JJ, this one is for you.
    I don’t know where you stand but on the one hand your boy is getting rid of a banking regulation but on the other hand it is an example of the “Bigs” screwing the little guy.

    This is a picture of Comrade Trump signing an executive order weakening the protections of the Dodd/Frank bill while his Director of the National Economic Council, former COO of Goldman-Sachs Gary Cohn, approvingly looks on.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a3afcf912127c16185fef8ca2f7659601b159b43e46f0cb9c686cae5f02ec4e5.jpg

    Comrade Trump also signed an EO rescinding a Department of Labor rule requiring that investment advisors have a fiduciary responsibility to act in the investor’s best interest, to avoid conflicts of interest, and be transparent with the investor about the advisor’s fees and compensation.

    Wasn’t Comrade Trump supposed to be for the little guy?

    • John Johnson

      Dodd-Franks was the death knell for small banks. Onerous, do-nothing regulations.

      As far as the other EO you mentioned, I have no knowledge of it.

      • WUSRPH

        You mean the ones that required that they retain more capital reserves so that they would be less likely to fail and cost the taxpayers?

        • BCinBCS

          Ignorance goes a long way today.

        • John Johnson

          Hide and watch. He has been in office how many weeks now? You are going to have a stroke.

      • donuthin2

        I think it was Reagan’s deregulation of banking that ended up being the death knell of the small community banks.

        • John Johnson

          Not familiar with what Reagan did with regards to banks, but Clinton’s repeal of Glass-Stegall was the big culprit. Dodd-Frank added tons of needless and redundant paperwork to any loan transaction. Bought a piece of property lately? Plan on spending an hour just signing your signature about 100 times. Goofy, red tape at it’s finest.

          • BCinBCS

            JJ asked: “Bought a piece of property lately?

            Yes I have – two houses and yes there was a lot of paperwork but most of that was the bank covering its ass.

            Did you already forget the economic crisis that nearly ruined this country in 2008 because there were not restrictions such as Dodd/Frank and Glass/Stegall on banks and financial institutions?

          • John Johnson

            That paperwork the Fed’s require the bank to create, get signed and scanned is just waisted time, motion and expense. More do nothing bureaucracy.

  • BCinBCS

    Remember when The Donald was running to be the Republican Presidential nominee and then the Republican candidate for President? Remember how he went on and on and on about those horrible “illegal aliens”, how they were job stealers, rapist, murderers, drug dealers and terrorists? Remember how he was going to deport all 11 million undocumented aliens from this country?

    Fast forward to Comrade President Trump/Bannon who, it would seem, is more interested in legal immigration than his folly of deporting 11,000,000 illegal immigrants.

    I just wanted to point that out.

    • WUSRPH

      Room 101 awaits you.

      • Florarrosario

        Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours and have longer with friends & family! !sp262c:
        On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
        !sp262c:
        ➽➽
        ➽➽;➽➽ http://GoogleFinancialJobsCash552ShopBuzzGetPay$97Hour ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★::::::!sp262c:….,…….

      • BCinBCS

        Just no rats, please!

        • SpiritofPearl

          The rats will be in the uninspected food . . .

          • BCinBCS

            It may be even worse, read Chapter V of Book III of 1984.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Do I have to? Once was enough. Remind me please.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Is it Room 101? I remember that part.

          • BCinBCS

            Captured by the Thought Police, Winston is tortured until he becomes dependent upon and loves Big Brother. The final act of his total surrender is to denounce his love for Julia. His torturer, O’Brien, in Room 101, places a cage full of large hungry rats near Winston telling him that he will open the partition allowing them to eat his face. Winston is so terrified of the hungry rats that he cries out that the cage be put on Julia’s face instead. Now totally broken, Winston is released back into society, totally dependent on and compliant with Big Brother.

          • SpiritofPearl

            As I remember the horror of Room 101 was specific to the victim’s deepest fear – rats, snakes, spiders, Republicans . . .

          • BCinBCS

            😉 Yep.

    • Amandadburton

      Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours and have longer with friends & family! !sp12c:
      On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
      !sp12c:
      ➽➽
      ➽➽;➽➽ http://GoogleFinancialJobsCash302ShopForumGetPay$97Hour ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★::::::!sp12c:….,…….

  • José

    Remember when the Republicans made such a big fuss about American Exceptionalism, and they got positively apoplectic if anyone even hinted that maybe we weren’t the biggest, bestest country in the history of the whole wide world? Now the head Republican hisself, Mr. Trump, says that hey we Americans really ain’t so different from the Rooskies and their murderous, thieving dictator.
    WHAT HAPPENED, AMERICA?

    • John Johnson

      I guess he was talking about our treatment of Native Americans in years past.

      • WUSRPH

        While our treatment of American Indians, blacks, Hispanics and Japanese-Americans, among others, have on more than one occasion been wrong…..nothing we have done equals the record of the Russians both before, during and after their Soviet period. Any attempt to compare the United States to them is an insult to all Americans.

        • John Johnson

          Oh, really!!! Righteous indignation.

          Killing small tribes to gain ground cannot be compared to killing masses to gain ground? You, yourself, condemn Turman for the bomb droppings.

          Quit bouncing from side to side on issues, Professor. At least, I’m consistant.

          • WUSRPH

            I really am getting worried about your memory lapses. I will pay $1000 in cash to anyone who can find any post I have EVER made that condemned Truman for the use of nuclear weapons to end WWII. I invite them and you to go thru all my posts—which are readily available on this blog, not hidden like yours. They will find that you statement is a total and complete lie…..you are getting more like Trump everyday.

          • John Johnson

            Show me your money before I go digging. You emanated that confronted with a similar situation that use of similar catastrophic weapons which would mean the death of non-combatants would be immoral and totally unacceptable. Which is it? You can’t have it both ways, which is how you normally try and position yourself by crawfishing when you position weakens. You are a master at it.

          • WUSRPH

            I never said anything like that because we were NEVER discussing any situation in any way comparable to ending the Second World War. What we were talking about was your totally immoral idea of using nuclear weapons against ISIS and other terrorist groups. Your only concern for non-combatants was that you said you’d give them a brief advance notice in order to flee. (Of course, so would the ISIS force). That is in no way a situation like Truman faced. I, like Truman, would have used them in the situation he was in. But no one—I hope not even a angry Trump when things do not go his way—can justify using nuclear weapons in anything but the most vital situation……

          • John Johnson

            Was Truman angry?

          • WUSRPH

            Truman could get very angry—-and showed it many times—but when it came time to make a decision like that one he took plenty of time, talked to numerous people and thought about it….There was no nearly instantaneous tweeting of ill-considered words like Running Mouth is famous for.

          • John Johnson

            Tweeting??? Oh, boy! Impetuous tweets are a sure sign someone is going to unleash a nuclear Armageddon. It’s a new world. Trump does not need the MSN to broadcast his words to the general public. He does it himself…and in pointed terms.

          • WUSRPH

            Its not the general public so much that he is offending….it is the other powers in this world who we must live with…..foolish lips sink countries. Impetuous tweets are a sign of someone incapable of taking a moment to think about the consequences of what he says…..someone with the maturity of a small child.

          • WUSRPH

            P.S. Because you have totally ducked admitting you lied about my views on Truman….the offer is now $3000.

          • John Johnson

            Oh, no! He is offending people by showing displeasure. Heaven forbid! He is using pointed words instead of politically correct googly gop? He is letting allies and foes alike know that it is no longer going to be business as usual? Nothing wrong with that.

  • BCinBCS

    Wow, wow, wow. Simply wow.

    I just read one of the best analysis of Comrade Trump. It’s moderately long but it’s still the weekend and the article is well worth the read. It’s by Fintan O’Toole of the Irish Times. Hopefully even those that voted for him and are unconcerned about why he does what he does will be interested in reading a non-American analysis. It can be found here:

    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/us/fintan-o-toole-welcome-to-trumperica-1.2960823?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    • John Johnson

      What difference does it make who wrote it; it reads the same as all the rest that you might find WaPo publishing. It is the Trump haters viewpoint. We get it. What good does repeating the same thing over and over get you? That’s right…an ulcer.

      • BCinBCS

        Well JJ, when everybody, including foreigners, come to about the same conclusion, I would begin to believe that maybe they are on to something. Just because that “something” is that the current President of the United States is mentally unstable is no reason to reject their consensus.

        • SpiritofPearl

          Some obervers suggest Trump followers are members of a “cargo cult”:

          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cargo_cult

        • John Johnson

          We find narcissism, exaggeration and lies in Obama, Hillary and Trump. We have a community organizer, a career politician, and a PT Barnum involved in current affairs. In light of the Obama and Clinton’s total buy into worldview economics at the expense of the American public, I was willing to give PT Trump a chance at saving our country from the same-old-same old.

          This said, I have an entrepreneurial attitude, and have always taken chances. Others who voted for Trump have always been employed, until they weren’t any longer. Still others, see that they work hard but can’t afford to insure their families because they fall into the middle class abyss. PTT was their choice because the other was more of the same.

  • John Bernard Books

    Lib’s mantra beat me screw me make me write bad checks……just lie to me
    “Journalists can’t seem to get their stories straight in the opening weeks of the Trump administration, whether in tweets or in articles where falsehoods have been spread almost daily.
    The mistakes have not just been from newer liberal news outlets such The Huffington Post or BuzzFeed, but from legacy media like Reuters, The Washington Post, and The New York Times.”

    http://dailycaller.com/2017/02/04/errors-from-the-press-are-piling-up-in-the-opening-weeks-of-the-trump-administration/#ixzz4XoRigtF6

    Then the dummies come here and post one of these lies….”look at what PRESIDENT Trump has done now”….fools….

  • John Bernard Books

    Would you break the law to further a flawed political agenda? Dems say it a right….
    “But it is unclear whether she could face local prosecution for covertly recording the conversations, a possible violation of state law. That decision falls to the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office, according to the sources, who were not authorized to speak publicly about the case.”
    http://www.philly.com/philly/news/pennsylvania/Sources-Feds-eyeing-Philly-reporter-in-probe-of-leaked-audio-from-Congressional-retreat.html

    If it a drunk democrat running the DA’s office probably not….

  • John Bernard Books

    Liberals cutNrun hiding from Prez Trump…
    “The White House Correspondents dinner, aka “the nerd prom,” may be in trouble. The New York Times reports that both Vanity Fair and The New Yorker, two Conde Nast publications, have pulled out of their annual parties. VF editor in chief Graydon Carter, no fan of Donald Trump, says he’s going fishing that weekend.”
    http://www.showbiz411.com/2017/02/03/white-house-correspondents-dinner-in-trouble-as-parties-cancel-group-has-funding-issues

    Liberals gave us Prez Trump

    “In the video, Meyers jokes that “Donald Trump has been saying he’ll run for president as a Republican, which is surprising as I just assumed he was running as a joke.”
    Meyers also made fun of Trump’s hairstyle, comparing it to a fox, and said that Gary Busey, who said that Trump would make a great president, said “the same thing about an old rusty birdy cage he found.”
    Obama also joined Meyers in mocking Trump’s possible run, saying that he was glad Trump had rejected the birther conspiracy so he could get back to real issues that matter, such as “did we fake the moon landing,” “what really happened in Roswell,” and “where are Biggie and Tupac?”
    He also made fun of Trump’s “credentials and birth of experience,” jokingly citing his firing of Gary Busey on Celebrity Apprentice as an example of his leadership qualities.
    “Well handled, sir. Well handled.””
    http://www.breitbart.com/big-hollywood/2016/11/09/watch-obama-seth-meyers-taunt-donald-trump-in-2011-over-possible-presidential-run/

    and now they are the fools….

  • John Johnson

    Waiting on one of you teeth gnashers to tell me what is unconstitutional about denying a non-citizen entry into our country, or even one who has received a green card.

    Mistakes were made in how this EO was executed. Hopefully, they will learn from it…those foreign nationals who helped and served us in numerous ways while in country, deserve special consideration and rapid expediting.

    • donuthin2

      They weren’t just innocent mistakes, they were stupid mistakes made by a group who are impulsive. Why are you so ok with the EOs now but when Obama issued some those of your ilk were livid?

    • BCinBCS

      It is unconstitutional because the ban discriminates against people of a particular religion. Its unconstitutionality is merely one of many other problems with the ban although they do not rise to the level of Constitutional violations.

      • John Johnson

        It is nationality, not religious affiliation. If it was religion the ban would have included 40, or so, other countries.

        • donuthin2

          No it was selectively religion and ruled to be unconstitutional. Right or wrong, there is a process to deal with it. Do you think he will follow the process?

          • John Johnson

            I think the court will overturn it. Was Carter’s ban unconstitutional? This is stupid. Want to place a ban on any given country having access to the US, how should the ban be worded to insure that it is not religious based if the country is predominately a religion other than Christian? Our Constitution is sound. Judges wanting to make law and interject a bunch of “yeah, but’s” instead of using the Constitution as a rock solid base will be the ruin of us.

          • BCinBCS

            The first thing that a President should do is not call for a ban on those of a particular religion (Islam), modify it to exclude the mention of that religion but then not apply the ban to the religion that you are not discriminating against (Christianity).

          • John Johnson

            Gotcha. Have not read the EO, but one way or the other, expect a reworded EO that will pass court muster and will ban travelers from those 7 countries with the exclusion of some green card holders.

          • WUSRPH

            You may be right that they will change what they are doing….but Trump is much too big of a megalomaniac to allow them to touch a word of his immortal (or is that immoral) prose.
            You know it is interesting that NO IMMIGRANT from any of the seven countries has committed a terrorist act in the United States since at least 1975 but the countries whose citizens have done so are not on the list.

          • John Johnson

            Oh, I agree with you that the ban should have been expanded, but O did not name SA, Kuwait and the UAE as terrorist havens or monetary supporters of same.

          • WUSRPH

            Trump was perfectly free to make his own choices…….funny you are insisting that he was limited by Obama’s.

          • John Johnson

            He was following precedent; Obama and his Congress named 7 countries terrorist havens, and he fought tooth and nail to keep the court from allowing 9/11 families to sue the Saudi’s. He was a puss. Still is. The WPE.

          • WUSRPH

            As usual, your hate of Obama makes it impossible for you to make a anywhere near objective comment on the bill to allow the 9/11 families to sue Saudi Arabia. It was opposed because it sets the precedent to allow foreign families to sue the United States in US Courts. This means that, because of that law, the relatives of all those killed by US forces (including non-combatants killed by missiles fired from drones) can not file damage suits here. They will not win….just as the 9/11 families will not win in their case….but it could keep the US tied up in lawsuits for years.

            As I said before, the law Trump is following gives him the full authority to make his own judgement. He chose not to….thereby not including the countries from which terrorists who have actually staged attacks have come. Guess that such a brave man was afraid of upsetting the Saudis.

          • John Johnson

            Hahaha. You slay me. Obama did not want the official report of the Saudi’s involvement in 9/11 released. Bottom line.

            Trump has been in office two weeks. He has plenty of time to drop the hammer on the Saudi’s if and when they decide to do so. Mistakes have been made these first few days, but to think there are no gameplans being formulated is ridiculous.

            Remember that Obama overrode the pleas of literally everyone in his cabinet and covey of advisors and allowed Geitner to talk him into allowing the heads of Big Banks and brokerage houses to collect hundreds of millions in bonuses. All paid for with taxpayer money. That was a massive mistake and one that MSN never dwelled on. He started losing me right there. It was the first of many stupid Obama decisions.

          • BCinBCS

            JJ, you know about the goose and the gander, right? If Obama allowed citizens of the U.S. to sue the government of Arabia then citizens of all other countries can sue the government of the U.S. for things that our people (including our soldiers) do in their countries. Are you prepared for this?

          • John Johnson

            Like father, like son.

            No, I don’t like the lawsuit; but I dislike the fact that our government would not release reports on 9/11 which showed the Saudi’s to be culpable.

          • BCinBCS

            That’s an interesting change in your argument. Now you don’t like the ability of 9|11 families to sue the Saudis?

            I’m sure that you boy Comrade Trump/Bannon will release the 9|11 report in 5…4…3…2…

          • John Johnson

            The report has already been released.
            http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/15/politics/congress-releases-28-pages-saudis-9-11/index.html

            I like the families ability to sue, but I don’t like this lawsuit.

          • BCinBCS

            I was not aware that the unredacted portion had been released. Since the report was released, why were you complaining about it failure to be released?

          • John Johnson

            Pay attention…Obama fought to keep it from being released.

          • WUSRPH

            He also should not at the same time he is releasing the order tell us that he wants to change the law that now says you cannot discriminate on religious grounds IN ORDER TO DISCRIMINATE in favor of Christians……That screams intent to anyone who is not too biased to look at the evidence.

          • WUSRPH

            The 14th Amendment sounds like a pretty rock solid base to me.

          • John Johnson

            We shall see.

        • BCinBCS

          Comrade Trump/Bannon repeatedly called for a ban on Muslims. He repeatedly called for “extreme vetting” of Muslims.

          • SpiritofPearl

            And Trump asked Giuliani sometime ago how to ban Muslims legally . . .

          • John Johnson

            But the EO did not have the word “Muslim” in it, and the court at some level with figure that out.

          • John Johnson

            So what. Yes, they said that…but the EO did not ban Muslims, it called for a ban on citizens from 7 countries. Nothing more.

          • BCinBCS

            So it’s okay to discriminate as long as you don’t call it discrimination?

            I’m not the only one calling it discrimination, the Washington state judge who stayed the EO called it that, as well.

            In addition to calling for a ban on Muslims Comrade Trump/Bannon specifically agreed to allow immigration of Christians from the banned areas.

          • John Johnson

            Was that in the EO? That Christians were to be excluded from the ban?

    • donuthin2

      Looks like Trump is the one gnashing his teeth over the judge’s ruling. He has shown no respect for the judge, and thus our system of government. He is out of control. Hopefully one day some of his Republican colleagues will put their thumb on him, but that is not very promising.

      • SpiritofPearl

        I’ve seen reports that the officer class of the GOP will yank him when his approval ratings reach a “we won’t get re-elected” point, but that they’ll see how far they can get until then.

  • SpiritofPearl

    Here’s an intersting Twitter feed I discovered:

    roguePOTUSstaff

    I’ve followed it for several days now. The creators claim they are WH staff who believe Trump is the “emperor with no clothes.” Some speculate that it’s Bannon attemping to sow misinformation. They won’t engage in espionage or tolerant threats of violence.

    They claim to use disposable phones that they swap out frequently to prevent detection and that they have many layers of anonymity built into their enterprise.

    • John Johnson

      Part of the old school elitist DC staffer who still think like elitist old school staffers. I think Trump should demand all take lie detector tests. That would draw their little rears up a bit.

      • BCinBCS

        Have you ever wondered why law-making and diplomacy is practiced the way that it is? Do you think that in all of the centuries of successful law-making and diplomacy by the cream individuals that alternative methods were not considered and tried? Look at the misery, confusion and rejection by the Judiciary that has occurred with Comrade Trump/Bannon’s haphazard method.

        • John Johnson

          And with Obama. Remember SCOTUS’s ruling against his ill thought out Ocare directive? Guess not.

          • BCinBCS

            Yes, I remember but Obama didn’t start railing against the judge and the judicial system when the ruling went against him.

          • John Johnson

            You mean the SCOTUS ruling? Who was he going to raise hell with?

          • WUSRPH

            The judges who ruled that the ACA was not covered under the Commerce Clause and who, in the process, took the opportunity to do a major rewrite of what had been standing precedent while giving some states a way to not provide coverage under Medicaid. That’s who.

          • John Johnson

            You mean that he took something for granted.

          • John Johnson

            Seems I remember O’s excoriating SCOTUS judges in a state of the union address while they sat on the 1st row in front of him. Guess that doesn’t count.

        • John Johnson

          Oh, I think that started with Obama and Reid. Pandora’s Box got opened.

      • WUSRPH

        More and more like Nixon….who even tapped the telephones of his top aides, including Kissinger.

        • John Johnson

          More wild eyed b.s. from an anguished soul.

          • WUSRPH

            You’re the one advocating making is aides submit to lie detector tests……but I’m sure that they would all pass them….When you believe in alternative facts and that anything negative must be a lie, you can pass any test.

          • SpiritofPearl

            The Gestapo is gearing up!

          • John Johnson

            If I had a group of closer malcontents leaking info, be it true or false, I would actively go about weeding them out by whatever means were available to me. Lie detector tests would be a good place to start. What would your old boss have done if private conversations were being leaked out of the Lt. Gov’s office? If drunk, have them executed?

          • WUSRPH

            Bullock would have been very upset. and would have tried to stop it…..Trump, however, seems not to notice….What is especially disturbing is that this leaking appears to be coming from true believers, not malcontents or holdovers from the enemy. I suspect that they are all struggling to get the media to proclaim their importance to feed their egos since they have never been in a position this high before.

            It is far too early to make a definitive judgement, but there are similarities between what is happening here and the way the top levels in Adolph’s Administration functioned. He, in fact, encouraged in-fighting (often for his attention) in order to keep any one individual from becoming important enough to challenge his position. Because of that, while Germans are alleged to be very “efficient” people, Adolph’s government turned out to be very inefficient, almost to the point of paralysis. Trump’s opponents can only hope that the similarities turn out to be realities.

          • John Johnson

            There you go again off on some wild, speculative tangent.

            Bullock would have tried to stop it, but Trump doesn’t seem to notice? How do you know that? You getting insider info? That statement was as unsupported as any you have ever made.

            You are becoming what you profess to hate.

  • John Bernard Books

    You need to grow up ButterCup…
    This is Not a Day Care. It’s a University!

    This past week, I actually had a student come forward after a university chapel service and complain because he felt “victimized” by a sermon on the topic of 1 Corinthians 13. It appears this young scholar felt offended because a homily on love made him feel bad for not showing love. In his mind, the speaker was wrong for making him, and his peers, feel uncomfortable.
    I’m not making this up. Our culture has actually taught our kids to be this self-absorbed and narcissistic. Any time their feelings are hurt, they are the victims. Anyone who dares challenge them and, thus, makes them “feel bad” about themselves, is a “hater,” a “bigot,” an “oppressor,” and a “victimizer.”
    I have a message for this young man and all others who care to listen. That feeling of discomfort you have after listening to a sermon is called a conscience. An altar call is supposed to make you feel bad. It is supposed to make you feel guilty. The goal of many a good sermon is to get you to confess your sins—not coddle you in your selfishness. The primary objective of the Church and the Christian faith is your confession, not your self-actualization.
    So here’s my advice:
    If you want the chaplain to tell you you’re a victim rather than tell you that you need virtue, this may not be the university you’re looking for. If you want to complain about a sermon that makes you feel less than loving for not showing love, this might be the wrong place.
    If you’re more interested in playing the “hater” card than you are in confessing your own hate; if you want to arrogantly lecture, rather than humbly learn; if you don’t want to feel guilt in your soul when you are guilty of sin; if you want to be enabled rather than confronted, there are many universities across the land (in Missouri and elsewhere) that will give you exactly what you want, but Oklahoma Wesleyan isn’t one of them.
    At OKWU, we teach you to be selfless rather than self-centered. We are more interested in you practicing personal forgiveness than political revenge. We want you to model interpersonal reconciliation rather than foment personal conflict. We believe the content of your character is more important than the color of your skin. We don’t believe that you have been victimized every time you feel guilty and we don’t issue “trigger warnings” before altar calls.
    Oklahoma Wesleyan is not a “safe place”, but rather, a place to learn: to learn that life isn’t about you, but about others; that the bad feeling you have while listening to a sermon is called guilt; that the way to address it is to repent of everything that’s wrong with you rather than blame others for everything that’s wrong with them. This is a place where you will quickly learn that you need to grow up.
    This is not a day care. This is a university.
    http://uschronicle.com/college-president-writes-scathing-letter-self-absorbed-narcissistic-students/#

    Liberals remind me of the whiny lil child who falls down then says “look what you made me do.”

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  • WUSRPH

    Here is an article from The Atlantic that is more than worth your attention:

    http://tinyurl.com/jpzkb6k

    • John Johnson

      Interesting read, and one that will get all the Hillary backers and the Repub elite fired up.

      Mr. Cohen’s take on Trump governing through EO’s is an opinion…one based on the EO’s he has signed off on thus far…most of which have strictly been executed to rescind an Obama EO.

      Mr. Cohen has no respect for Trump; he never has; I don’t respect him; never have. But I believe he was the better choice of the two candidates.

      Trump is an egotist to the max; he exaggerates to the max; he embellishes to the max…but his moves thus far scare me nary a bit. In fact, I like them.

      He has made mistakes…like the ill thought out ban which excluded green card carrying “friends” from exclusion, but there is a learning curve here, and Mr. Cohen, and the rest of you teeth gnashers, think Trump is not capable of “learning”. I disagree.

      If he, indeed, does not heed the advice of appointed department heads on major issues, we will know in the not too distant future. Two weeks in office is a goofy measuring stick.

      He is being afforded no “honeymoon” because he chose not to take one. He hit the ground running making good on campaign promises. I get it…you don’t like it. You don’t like his style, nor his motives. Tough.

      Talking tough to foreign leaders…even friends over previous deals Obama made with them is part of his program. We have given and given and given to allies and abusers alike. We citizens have no idea how much this has amounted to. Maybe we are about to start finding out.

      Projecting by people like Mr. Cohen and you is part and parcel of what was expected after an electoral college win by a guy who stepped all over your queen bee and his Repubican elite. If his prognostications hold true, I will be berating Trump just as you are now…but not before he has had time to show that he is capable of building consensus within his party and going about getting legislative approval for his proposals.

      • BCinBCS

        I always try to see your point of view even if I don’t agree with it but: “He is being afforded no “honeymoon” because he chose not to take one.” cannot be supported by any facts. A President does not chose to have a honeymoon period, it is granted by the people.

        • John Johnson

          Horseshit. He hit the ground throwing punches, and you malcontent’s started screaming. He knows what he is doing. He is poking you in the eye every time he makes a move.

          • BCinBCS

            He knows what he is doing.

            I will challenge that statement with every breath in my body.

            Here:

            He thinks that he knows what he is doing.

            FIFY

          • John Johnson

            And you think you are right. What’s the difference?

          • BCinBCS

            JJ asked: “What’s the difference?

            The difference is that my opinions are based on facts but, much more importantly, my opinions do not negatively affect millions of people as do Comrade Trump/Bannon’s.

          • John Johnson

            You are such a special person. All of us dumbasses are so envious of you and profound enlightenment.

          • WUSRPH

            There you go again with the personal insults. Why is it that it always happens when you seem not to be getting the best in a debate?

          • John Johnson

            I simply get tired of mudane bullshit.

            As far as your chiming in to protect your protege, you have shown as much proclivity for personal insults here as anyone here over the years, while trying to project yourself as genteel. It makes me laugh when I see you chastising for getting personal. You and Pearl made up quite a tag team for a long, long time.

          • SpiritofPearl

            It has been said, “He doesn’t know what he doesn’t know.”

            Constant tweeting, but no time to read briefing books or receive intelligence briefings is treasonous.

          • WUSRPH

            I think it is more likely that “he imagines that he knows what he is doing”…

          • WUSRPH

            The question is not whether Trump is capable of learning…..Virtually any living creature down to an amoeba is probably capable of learning The problem appears to be that he is NOT WILLNG to learn, not that he cannot.

      • BCinBCS

        From the Atlantic article:
        (with a slight modification)

        Many conservative foreign-policy and national-security experts saw the dangers last spring and summer, which is why we signed letters denouncing not Trump’s policies but his temperament; not his program but his character.

        We were right. And [JJ] who urged us to tone it down, to make our peace with him, to stop saying as loudly as we could “this is abnormal,” to accommodate him, to show loyalty to the Republican Party, to think that he and his advisers could be tamed, were wrong.

    • BCinBCS

      W, that is a great article.

      • SpiritofPearl

        I read this several days ago. May it be so!

  • John Bernard Books

    PRESIDENT TRump is great friends with Kraft the Patriots owner, makes sense they won. Trump making America great again….

  • John Bernard Books

    Nate Silver told us over and over Hillary would win….
    Nate Silver told us Atalanta would win……

    Nate Silver is a dem…..go figure…..

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  • SpiritofPearl

    Excellent essay . . . Trump’s radical anti-Americanism:

    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/02/13/trumps-radical-anti-americanism

    Resist!

    • BCinBCS

      Great article.

      I had a protracted discussion (argument) with one of my many ultra-conservative friends last evening about how it is very American to protest. He seemed to believe that protest was un-American since it goes against the U.S. government. His position is that it shouldn’t be allowed while my position was that the First Amendment would have to be changed in order to do that. He is totally invested in Comrade Trump/Bannon and has drunk gallons and gallons of Kool-Aid.

      • WUSRPH

        Over the years various polls have asked people whether they would support the rights granted by the First Amendment, without telling them that they already existed in the amendment. Time and time again the rights have been rejected. That is why so many insisted in 1789 that they be put in the Constitution where they would be safe from momentary passions and the Donald Trumps and Richard Nixons.

      • SpiritofPearl

        Did he fall asleep in history class during the part about the Boston Tea Party?

        • BCinBCS

          I also made that exact point to him (minus the sleeping part).

  • John Bernard Books

    Get out the popcorn…
    “His being a Muslim is precisely why DNC voters should not vote for him. Muslims discriminate against gays. Islamic law is clear on the subject, and being gay is a direct violation of it. In some Muslim countries, being gay is a crime punishable by death,” Tolliver said.”
    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/02/05/expelled-candidate-for-dnc-chair-suing-democrats-for-breach-of-first-amendment/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social

    Dems discriminating….again

    • enp1955

      John, wouldn’t the Muslim position on gays be exactly the same as right-wing evangelist’s position on gays? It seems to me that the hard-core religious are much the same, regardless of the name they slap on it. They work to demonize others that are not like them, they obsess over sexual behaviors and preferences, and they attempt to use government to turn their beliefs into legislation and impose those beliefs on others. I don’t like it in Muslims or in Christians. Religion and faith are personal, and should remain so – not be imposed on others.

  • SpiritofPearl
  • John Bernard Books

    You mean they lied……
    “The report claimed that the ‘pause’ or ‘slowdown’ in global warming in the period since 1998 – revealed by UN scientists in 2013 – never existed, and that world temperatures had been rising faster than scientists expected. Launched by NOAA with a public relations fanfare, it was splashed across the world’s media, and cited repeatedly by politicians and policy makers.”

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4192182/World-leaders-duped-manipulated-global-warming-data.html#ixzz4XvKNpyzY
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

    But it was published in the Noo York Times…..

  • WUSRPH

    If its negative it’s a fake an a lie….or so says Running Mouth…..Can the Ministry of Truth be far behind?

    • John Bernard Books

      why you call yourself running mouth….you’re just a typical uninformed dem

  • WUSRPH

    Trump’s Putin remarks may be ‘most anti-American statement’ ever by a president
    (thanks to The Hill)

    • BCinBCS

      When it comes to power, hypocrisy knows no bounds with the GOP.

  • BCinBCS

    I read with increasing and increasing horror a New York Times article on the inner workings of the Comrade Trump/Bannon administration and White House staff. Apparently things are not going smoothly. Even little things such as:

    Aides confer in the dark because they cannot figure out how to operate the light switches in the cabinet room. Visitors conclude their meetings and then wander around, testing doorknobs until finding one that leads to an exit.

    Comrade Trump/Bannon is finally changing the chaotic way that the White House is operated:

    From now on, Mr. Trump would be looped in on the drafting of executive orders much earlier in the process.

    Part of diminishing the chaos is settling everyone into the roles that they will play, including Reince Priebus:

    Mr. Priebus bristles at the perception that he occupies a diminished perch in the West Wing pecking order compared with previous chiefs. But for the moment, Mr. Bannon remains the president’s dominant adviser, despite Mr. Trump’s anger that he was not fully briefed on details of the executive order he signed giving his chief strategist a seat on the National Security Council, a greater source of frustration to the president than the fallout from the travel ban.

    Wait…what…? Did I read that correctly?

    …Mr. Bannon remains the president’s dominant adviser, despite Mr. Trump’s anger that he was not fully briefed on details of the executive order he signed giving his chief strategist a seat on the National Security Council…

    If Comrade Trump did not put his chief advisor on the Security Council then who did? Did Bannon appoint himself? Oh, my!

    And what is the twitter-in-chief doing?

    Visitors to the Oval Office say Mr. Trump is obsessed with the décor — it is both a totem of a victory that validates him as a serious person and an image-burnishing backdrop — so he has told his staff to schedule as many televised events in the room as possible.

    To pass the time between meetings, Mr. Trump gives quick tours to visitors, highlighting little tweaks he has made after initially expecting he would have to pay for them himself.

    Flanking his desk are portraits of Presidents Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson. He will linger on the opulence of the newly hung golden drapes, which he told a recent visitor were once used by Franklin D. Roosevelt but in fact were patterned for Bill Clinton. For a man who sometimes has trouble concentrating on policy memos, Mr. Trump was delighted to page through a book that offered him 17 window covering options.

    I don’t know about you, but I’m comforted to know how great the best people are bringing about yuuge changes to our government swamp.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/05/us/politics/trump-white-house-aides-strategy.html?_r=1

    • WUSRPH

      It is far too early to make a definitive judgement, but there are similarities between what is happening here and the way the top levels in Adolph’s Administration functioned. He was also fascinated with the details of his image and how it was portrayed. He practiced every gesture of his speeches (even when they appear spontaneous they were carefully staged) and went as far as to have his favorite architect, Herr Speer, design the backdrops and stages on which he appeared. (Noting topped the use of searchlights to create a wall of light around the Nuremberg Rally)….

      There is also some similarities between the apparent in-fighting and scrambles for attention by Trump’s aides. Adolph, in fact, encouraged in-fighting (often for his attention) in order to keep any one individual from becoming important enough to challenge his position. Because of that, while Germans are alleged to be very “efficient” people, Adolph’s government turned out to be very inefficient, almost to the point of paralysis. Trump’s opponents can only hope that the similarities turn out to be realities.

      • BCinBCS

        I have often marveled at the military displays at Hitler’s speeches. The only country that comes close is North Korea. As a long time bandsman, I am in awe of the ruler straight ranks, files and diagonals that they were able to achieve using such huge numbers of soldiers.

      • SpiritofPearl

        Leni Riefenstahl?

        • WUSRPH

          She filmed it in “Triumph of the Will” one of the seminal works of the cinema….but Albert Speer designed it.

    • SpiritofPearl

      The roguePOTUSstaff twitter feed claims Pence, Ryan, and Priebus comprise the “Unholy Trinity.” Bannon and Miller (plus two new Breitbartians) form another power center, Jared and Ivanka another.

      • BCinBCS

        Ya, those are the groups causing the palace intrigue that causes all of the secrecy in the White House that causes the ill designed and incompletely constructed policies that are plaguing our country.

        • SpiritofPearl

          Still haven’t verified the reliabilty of roguePOTUSstaff, so take it with a grain of salt.

  • BCinBCS

    Last Saturday, I wrote this:

    If there is one thing that I have learned about politics it’s that most lies are soon found out.

    When the American SEAL team along with UAE Special Forces attacked an Al Qaeda compound January 29th, Comrade Trump/Bannon declared it a success by all standards. Despite the death of one Navy SEAL, information that came out later showed that the mission was compromised, that women and children were killed and that a $75,000,000.00 Osprey aircraft was lost. In an attempt to demonstrate that all of these losses weren’t for nothing, a video found on one of the captured computers that demonstrates how to prepare a bomb was posted by the U.S. Unfortunately, this “new” information turned out to be bomb making instructions that have been on the internet for a decade.

    So much for the success.

    As my first sentence stated, “most lies are soon found out”; now comes a report by NBC Nightly News that the “success[ful] by all standards” raid was actually designed to capture the head of Al Qaeda in Yemen, Al Rimi.

    The risky raid was approved by Comrade Trump/Bannon after his Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs appointees told him that the raid would be a “game changer” and then, apparently appealing to his vanity, told him that “Obama wasn’t bold enough to try”.

    So, the raid that was a “success by all standards” killed a Navy SEAL, killed women and children, caused the loss of a $75 million aircraft, assuredly turned many tribesmen against the United States and did not capture or kill Al Rimi.

    • SpiritofPearl

      Trumpheads worked it out on a napkin over dinner . . .

      • John Johnson

        Dem’s work it out after the law is passed. Remember? “Just pass the bill; read it later.”

        • WUSRPH

          It is called having trust in your leadership and/or in the judgement of other members. You cannot expect an individual member of the Congress or the Legislature to become an expert in the hundreds of different subjects they consider…That is why they develop trust in other members who are experts in the area and follow their advice. But, of course, you’ve never done that in your business or life since you’ve always known everything about everything. I have to rely on others myself.

          P.S. I’ll be out of state for the next week for my mother-in-laws funeral so you may not hear much from me. I know this will be a pleasant vacation for you.

          • John Johnson

            My condolences. Vio con Dios.

  • John Johnson

    Better get up to speed, Professor…your underling is vying to take your “Most Prolific Pedant” poster title away from you. Jed and Pearl still have a lock on “Angriest”.

    • WUSRPH

      What ranking are you giving to the Troll? Most ignored?

  • WUSRPH

    A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:

    The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. He should be supported
    or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the Nation as a whole. Therefore it is absolutely
    necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else. -Theodore Roosevelt, 26th US President (1858-1919)

  • WUSRPH

    The Washington Post made an interesting observation about the list of “underreported” Terrorist attacks released by the WH to show that the media is suppressing news of such attacks:

    It seems that virtually all the attacks listed involve attacks on WESTERNERS although the vast majority of the victims of such attacks or Arabs or other Muslims……I guess it Trump and company feel it is okay when they kill each other…The list is probably a reflection of Bannon’s fixation with an Islamic war against Western Civilization.

    • John Johnson

      Nearly two-thirds of Navy planes grounded due to years of budget cuts
      http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/02/07/nearly-two-thirds-navy-planes-grounded-due-to-years-budget-cuts.html

      • WUSRPH

        Budget cuts MANDATED by the GOP-controlled Congress which was unable to produce an annual budget and relied on continuing resolutions for most of the time. I wonder if they will do any better with Trump as president…..They may not want to since it is easier to hide the cost of many of his programs if you don’t put it all down in a budget where it can be seen by all.

        • John Johnson

          You have an excuse for everything.

          Just posted this because both you and Beerman were disputing my claim that the military was grounding planes because of lack of parts, and that mechanic’s were leaving the service because of overwork while million dollar pilots were sitting doing nothing because they had nothing to fly.

          • WUSRPH

            You’ve never been able to distinguish between an “explanation” and an “excuse”. Saying that the planes were grounded because of budget cuts made by the Congress is an explanation…..although, if you want to, you it could also be taken as an “excuse” for Obama even thou neither of us mentioned him.
            You used to jump on Burka (and me to an extent) saying he was approving of the way things were done in the Lege. when he was explaining what happened and giving some history. You also never have been able to understand the difference between “reporting” and “editorializing” or taking a position. You just assumed he had to approve of whatever he was writing about because he did not begin with “ALTHOUGH IT WAS A TERRIBLE WRONG…..” But, so you do not have any doubt, when I approve or disapprove of something, I will try to make it very, very clear.

          • John Johnson

            Nope. Both you and Burka, in response to my comments on bad policies and bad habits in Austin both used the excuse, “They all do it”, and “It’s been done this way for a long time”. I never let my kids get away with that sort of b.s. when attempting to justify actions, but Burka did his longtime friends in the political arena, and you did/do because you were right in the middle of it.

          • WUSRPH

            And those answers were explanations and history…..not a judgement of whether it was good or bad.

          • John Johnson

            Those were excuses for bad behavior. The last time Burka used it was when I was pounding on Ogden for caving in on the dedicated accounts issue.

          • WUSRPH

            He has a simple choice…..”cave in” on an important but not vital issue that could wait for another two years….OR not pass the budget, the only bill that must be passed. Not that difficult of a choice for the man whose responsibility it was to produce a budget. But you’ve never compromised in your life…..of course.

          • John Johnson

            A couple of things that your professional spin does not address. (1) most rural fire departments, emergency rooms, people wanting to us state parks with shut down restrooms and the like had no idea that the state was holding and using hundreds of millions dedicated to them in order to declare the budget balanced. While TP&W was spending funds to advertise for donations to keep our parks open, and volunteer fire departments were holding chili suppers to buy needed equipment, our legislators continued to hold these funds instead of cutting back elsewhere. (2) They never let the public know what they were doing; no legislator came home and clued constituents in on what they were doing; and (3) Ogden made a public announcement that he was going to change all that, caved into pressure from his colleagues, and silently went along with them with no public explanation.

            There is nothing about this stinky practice I liked or respected. If those we elect to handle our money have to use funds that really aren’t theirs to use, the least they could do is publically fess up, make people aware and attempt to justify it.

      • BCinBCS

        The military is not the only agency affected by budgetary cuts.

        Do you like hamburger, chicken and pork? How about milk and salads?

        At the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the other federal agency primarily involved in food safety efforts, the federal hiring freeze imposed by the new administration is having an impact on the Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS).

        In an internal message sent to FSIS employees on Jan. 18 and obtained by Food Safety News warned that delays in lab tests are expected through at least March 3. The FSIS is responsible for ensuring the safety of meat, poultry, processed egg products and catfish.

        ‘Effective Jan. 18, 2017, due to a temporary decrease in staffing, results on pathology samples submitted to the FSIS laboratory system will be delayed,’ according to the email sent to all FSIS employees.

        ‘AMR-01 and rush cases will be given priority status; however turnaround times are expected to be delayed by at least 24 hours on these samples. This is expected to be rectified by March 3, 2017, but is dependent on staffing key vacancies. The Pathology Branch apologies for the inconvenience these delays will cause.’

        ‘News that the USDA does not have enough staff to properly test the nation’s food supply is extremely disconcerting and it is only a matter of time until a consumer ends up sick — or worse, dead,’ U.S. Rep Rosa Delauro, D-CT told Food Safety News.

        ‘President Trump should take a good hard look at the implications of his decisions and stop jeopardizing the health and well being of the American people with his overreaching executive actions.’

        http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2017/01/federal-hiring-freeze-disrupts-usdas-food-safety-testing/#.WJqmtd23aia

  • BCinBCS

    Now isn’t this interesting.

    I just learned that on January 20, 2017, Comrade Donald J. Trump filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission to be a candidate for re-election as President of the United States in 2020.

    On first blush I would say: “Who cares?” but after thinking about why he would be the first one to ever file this early (most file sometime after the mid-term elections) I have concluded it’s probably for nefarious reasons. Candidates for office operate under different rules than actual office holders. The main area in which I know that this occurs is financing.

    I’m far from knowledgeable about this area of politics so I’ll leave it to those of you that know more about the ramifications of this than me. Any ideas or information out there?

    • WUSRPH

      It will definitely allow him to collect contributions for that election….separate from his reports for the past campaign…I am not sure what it does to super PACs supporting him….but it may open the door to them as well…

      • SpiritofPearl

        Perhaps he will have complied with the ethics investigators by then.

  • WUSRPH

    One thing that Trump has proven during his first days in office—–he and his staff definitely need a proof reader. Misspellings after misspellings….The latest example is the list of “underreported” attacks on Westerners by Islamic terrorists in which the word “attack” was misspelled 27 times. (They left the “c” out.) I know he is supposed to be a straight-talker who speaks language the public understands and all that…..but they could use a spellchecker once in a while couldn’t they? Of course, it could be deliberate in an attempt to get Americans to fully adopt phonetic spellings…but could it be another case of the secret group within the White House staff that is trying to sabotage him?

    • SpiritofPearl

      Meriwether Lewis and William Clark were creative spellers. They had almost 30 ways to spell “mosquito.

      • WUSRPH

        But that was before spellings were standardized by a guy named Noah Webster published his dictionary in 1828. Most of us have been following his rules since then….Webster, by the way, deliberated changed the spelling of a number of “English” words—such as colour and labour—to “Americanize” our language and make us different from the British. He was also big for using conjunctions so that we say “we went to the hospital while the Brits just say “we went to hospital” or they say “go up to University”, etc.

        Of course, as I noted above, Trump may also be a fan of phonetic spellings…After all, why does attack have to an “c”? .Col. Robert McCormick of the Chicago Tribune was a big fan of that and for many years the Tribune spelled a number of words his way……Words such as “foto” for photo and “thru” for through and “employe” for employee…They were not only closer to the way the words are pronounced but they also saved the newspaper a few cents because they did not have to use as much lead to set type. Most of his spelling were dropped after he died….but I often use thru myself.
        That is your history lesson for today.

        • SpiritofPearl

          What ever happened to Esperanto?

  • WUSRPH

    Trump is on record as praising the governing skills of both Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and the late Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein……and has suggested that world would be a better place if the US and its allies had just left them alone to run their countries. I doubt (or hope) that does not include his approval of the killing of numerous political enemies by both over the years. After Saddam was ousted they discovered literally fields full of the graves of people his regime had grabbed for not agreeing with him…Now we hear that Assad has had at least 13,000 opponents hung in only one prison. Of course, since Trump also seems to have no problem with Putin’s record in this area, perhaps he accepts the killings as being necessary in their conditions….