Democracy #Featured

Wrong Way Flows The Don(ald)

I imagine that to a Trump supporter, the president’s moves seem like a new direction for the country.

For me, we are taking giant steps backwards.

It’s not just the denial of climate science or the reversal of protections for LGBTQ citizens, or the hounding of Muslims or threatening North Korea with a ship that was going the wrong way. Or any of the other executive orders undoing any number of worthwhile things like protecting consumers from financial advisers who might value commissions over investors, or net neutrality, or allowing cable television companies to continue to monopolize set-top boxes, or trying to repeal a health care law and replace it with a law that covers 24 million fewer people.

No, despite all of those gems and more, I see the country going back to a time when it was fine to say terrible things to women and minorities and to create groups that deserve protection and those that do not and the ones that do not are usually weaker or vulnerable.

But then there’s the light that illuminated the swamp that is FOX News, resulting in the toppling of Chairman O’Reilly and, perhaps, more executives who tolerated his abuse. And there’s the energy in Georgia and Montana and the other places where Democrats will be challenging Republicans on their own turf. After all, Trump went into the Midwest and won the election. Surely, Democrats can go into the South and the Plains and win some races there.

The big plus, though, is that Republicans are actually in charge and they are proving the point that it’s very difficult to run a government when you want that government to disappear. Yes, the GOP is making noise about reviving the health care bill, but the problem of cost and coverage, especially for those who voted for Trump but still need Obamacare, will doom any attempt to gut the bill, which is really what the rank and file want. They will rue the day.

And tax reform? Show us your returns, Mr. President, so we know how you benefit from the system. Then maybe we’ll support an overhaul that actually helps the middle class. But I don’t see that being a priority for the right. Get rid of the mortgage and state tax deductions? Slap an import tariff on my Kohl’s clothes sprees? Get into a trade war with Canada over milk? Good luck with that.

So maybe things are looking up? A monosyllabic chief executive can only say “great” so many times before he actually has to do something, or get Congress to pass some actual laws. In the meantime, the country will continue to slip backwards, harking back to a time that might have been great for some, but not for all.

It’s a shame that we’ll have to wait to move forward.

For more, go to www.facebook.com/WhereDemocracyLives or Twitter @rigrundfest

Featured

Donald Trump and Republicans On Wrong Side of Every Issue – POLL

From repealing Obamacare to Trump’s desire to lower taxes for the rich, Republicans and Trump are in a bubble when it comes go gauging what Americans really want.

Only 36 percent of American voters say Republicans in Congress should try again to repeal and replace Obamacare, the 2010 Affordable Care Act, while 60 percent say the Republicans should “move on.”

Voters disapprove 65 – 29 percent of the way President Donald Trump is handling health care and say 54 – 22 percent that he is handling health care worse than former President Barack Obama. Another 19 percent say he is handling it about the same as President Obama.

American voters are opposed to several proposals supported by President Trump and

Republicans in Congress:

  • Oppose 75 – 21 percent lowering taxes on the wealthy;
  • Oppose 66 – 25 percent removing regulations intended to combat climate change;
  • Oppose 64 – 33 percent building a wall on the border with Mexico;
  • Oppose 66 – 30 percent cutting off federal funding for Planned Parenthood, rising to 85 – 10 percent when respondents are told federal funding for Planned Parenthood does not pay for abortions.

American voters now support 57 – 38 percent allowing Syrian refugees into the U.S., reversing opposition of 51 – 43 percent in a December 23, 2015, Quinnipiac University national poll. Republicans are the only listed group opposed. White men and white voters with no college degree each are tied.

Trump’s Travels

Trump spends too much time at properties owned by his company, voters say 55 – 34 percent. He does not spend enough time at the White House, 50 percent of voters say, while 2 percent say he spends too much time and 38 percent say he spends the right amount of time.

A total of 35 percent of American voters are “very comfortable” or “somewhat comfortable” with the amount spent on security so President Trump and his family can stay in places other than the White House, while 60 percent are “not so comfortable” or “not comfortable at all.”

Featured

Former Army Colonel Confesses He’s Very Concerned about America’s World Relations

You got Vladimir Putin and Russia saying that relations between the U.S and Russia is at an all time low. You got Donald Trump authorizing 60 missiles dropped in Syria, you got another massive bomb called, The Mother of All Bombs raining down in Afghanistan and you got Donald Trump and North Korea threatening nuclear destruction. And all this is happening within Trump’s first 100 days in office.

Put all that together and you have a recipe for global destruction, a time that concerns a seasoned veteran of U.S foreign affairs history.

“I’ve been through the Cuban missile crisis, I’ve been through the Bay of Pigs before that, Vietnam War, the two Iraq wars and so forth,” Former Army Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson told MSNBC. “And I’ve got to tell you, though, I’ve never been so concerned, as I am now, for the state of this country and world relations.”

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Featured

Reporter to Sean Spicer – Are We Ever Going to See Trump’s Taxes? – Video

Donald Trump has dicked the American people around for so long, that even reporters are beginning to call him out on it. One issue in particular that has the public concerned, and is Trump’s insistence on keeping his taxes hidden from the people.

Trump is the first American president in recent decades to fool the American people into voting him into office without allowing us  to see who he is financially connected to. In a recent press conference, White House spokesman Sean Spicer was asked whether Trump would release his 2016 taxes, to which he answered that those taxes were already under a routine audit.

How convenient!

“I think it’s been covered before. It’s the same thing that was discussed on the campaign trail. The president is under audit. It’s a routine one and it continues. And I think the American public [knows] clearly where he stands. This is something that he made very clear during the election cycle.”

ABC reporter, Johnathan Karl heard enough!

“You’ve been asked about this obviously a thousand times. You always talk about you’re under audit, the president is under audit. Is it time to say once and for all, the president is never going to release his tax returns?”

“We’ll have to get back to you on that,” Spicer replied. A well practiced phrase indeed.

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Democracy #Featured

Who Knew It Could Get So Dangerous?

On the (months ago) heels of a 40 watt light bulb going off in the president’s head about how complicated health care could be, comes another revelation – unstated, about how dangerous the world could be.

Perhaps Donald Trump believed that throwing 59 missiles at Syria would startle Presidents Assad and Putin to the point that they would give up the fight and flee. Or maybe Trump giving his generals the green light to MOAB the Afghani desert would cause ISIS to run a white flag up a flagpole like the Vietcong did (not) when Richard Nixon decided we had too many leftover bombs in our arsenal and thought that Christmas would be a fabulous time to send a message of peace war.

In any case, this is now getting dangerous.

Never mind that North Korea’s attempts to rattle us ended in a failure that can be traced back to President Obama’s program to disrupt Kim Jong-un’s military through cyber-warfare. President Trump (shudder) will try to take credit for waking up in the morning and thinking that his actions will solve any and all real world problems. This is the kind of diplomacy we’ve seen before from politicians who believe that sending a military message without any diplomatic follow-up will yield meaningful fruit. It will not. Add the yeasty smell of a candidate who questioned the validity of NATO, and you have the makings of a loaf of something that makes matzah seem like a 7 layer cake.

For three months we saw Donald Trump’s attempts at domestic policy and the utter failure that resulted from his ineptitude. Foreign policy is much trickier and, as we’ve seen, can kill far more people than repealing the ACA. Rex Tillerson has his work cut out for him.

Gee, wouldn’t it be nice to have a president with some foreign policy and diplomatic experience? Like…

For more, go to www.facebook.com/WhereDemocracyLives or Twitter @rigrundfest

Celebrities

R.I.P Charlie Murphy – Dead At The Age of 57

The younger brother of Eddie Murphy passed away on Wednesday, April 12th, in a New York hospital. He was 57 years old.

Although living in the brighter light of his older brother, Charlie made a name for himself, with frequent appearances on “Chapelle’s Show,” Harlem Nights and The Perfect Lady.  He also co-starred in TV series like “Are We There Yet?” “Black Jesus,” “The Boondocks” and “Meet the Blacks.”

The news of his passing was conveyed by his publicist, who told TMZ that Charlie was undergoing chemotherapy in New York when he died. He suffered from Leukemia.

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Racial profiling

Sacramento Police Beats Black Man for Jaywalking – Video

Police Brutality has not stopped, although it’s not front and center in the news these days.

The Sacramento Police Department on Tuesday announced a formal investigation into the actions of one of their officers who was seen slamming a black man to the ground and beating him — all sparked by an alleged case of jaywalking, NBCNews reports.

The video, released Monday, has sparked national outrage. It shows the officer confronting the man, identified as Nandi Cain Jr., as he crossed an intersection and attempting to talk to Cain but the situation quickly escalates.

After some words are exchanged while Cain is standing in the street, the officer then violently throws Cain to the ground and begins to punch him in the head.

The events leading up to the incident were not captured by the camera, and it is not possible to hear the conversation between Cain and the officer before the incident occurred.

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