Tag Archives: Trump

Republican tax plan unveiled

As expected, the Republican leadership has unveiled a new tax proposal that would consolidate the number of tax brackets while increasing the rate of the lowest bracket and increasing the standard deduction.

I admit that I have grown very cynical about these proposals. They never end up simplifying anything. Instead, each time Congress has done this in the past three decades they have only made the tax code more complicated. I see no evidence so far that this Congress and this Republican leadership will do anything different.

Moreover, Congress and Trump continue to make little effort to rein in spending, so I expect the result here will also be a significant increase in the crushing federal debt.

Share

First meeting of National Space Council announced

A Potemkin Village: The White House has announced the date of the first public meeting of the National Space Council, set for October 5 at the Air & Space Museum.

Today, Vice President Mike Pence announced the first meeting of the National Space Council is scheduled for October 5, 2017 at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia. The meeting, titled “Leading the Next Frontier: An Event with the National Space Council,” will include testimonials from expert witnesses who represent the sectors of the space industry: Civil Space, Commercial Space, and National Security Space.

What this announcement tells me is that this council isn’t there to discuss and set space policy, but to sell that policy to the public. And right now, I am expecting that sales job will be trying to convince us that we must use SLS/Orion mission to build a new space station orbiting the Moon by 2023. They will use the council to pitch the idea, and then Trump will make the traditional Kennedy-like speech, with lots of astronauts standing behind him, committing this nation to putting a space station around the Moon by such-and-such a date. Whoopie!

Forgive me if I sound a bit cynical. I’ve seen this show many times before. For some reason, the opening act is great, but then it fades always away into nothingness before the second act begins.

Share

Republican leaders to introduce tax increase

Failure theater: The Republican leadership in Congress is about to introduce tax increase, increasing the tax rate for the lowest bracket from 10% to 12%, while making believe that it really is a tax cut.

The plan will also increase the tax deduction, which they will then claim means that the tax increase really doesn’t matter.

They really have an utter contempt for the people who voted for them, not unlike the utter contempt being shown right now by the NFL to its customer base. Well, if you spit on your supporters don’t expect them to support you much longer.

Share

In new Obamacare vote, Republican leaders offering bribes

Finding out what’s in it, part 2: The Senate Republican leadership is offering Senator Lisa Murkowsky (R-Alaska) specific rewrites favoring just Alaska in order to buy her vote on their new attempt to revise Obamacare.

The bribe includes three provisions, but this one I think is most corrupt:

Alaska (along with Hawaii) will continue to receive Obamacare’s premium tax credits while they are repealed for all other states. It appears this exemption will not affect Alaska receiving its state allotment under the new block grant in addition to the premium tax credits.

There are also some indications that this secret bill for which no text has been made public, as far as I can tell, also keeps the Obamacare requirement that insurance companies will not be allowed to deny anyone insurance no matter how sick they are. This is the provision that is essentially bankrupting the industry and forcing premiums to skyrocket. By keeping it, these Republicans reveal their overall support for Obamacare.

Share

Trump White House wins Emmy for best reality show

News you can use! The Trump White House has won an Emmy for producing the best on-going reality show on television.

Trump accepted the award in an emotional speech at the Microsoft Theater, thanking the hundreds of staff members he has fired so far in his presidency, as well as his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. “Oh man, I know I’m forgetting so many people,” he said as the background music began to prompt him to wrap up his acceptance speech. “Spicey, the Mooch, Bannon the Cannon, and all the others I can’t remember right now—you guys made this all possible. I know I’m the star here, but it’s the great cast of side characters, past and present, that really made this whole insane circus come together.”

“I’m the best!” he cried out as he was finally escorted off stage.

Read it all. You will realize that real reality is almost always more interesting than fake reality.

Share

Oh no! Climate panel might include skeptics!

According to this Washington Post article, the Trump administration is considering naming some skeptical climate scientists to the EPA’s Science Advisory Board, something that the newspaper, the global warming crowd, and some EPA employees apparently consider a horrible taboo.

[T]he inclusion of a handful of climate contrarians has caused early concern among environmental groups and some employees at the agency. “We should be able to trust that those who serve the EPA are the all-stars in their fields and committed to public service,” said Michael Halpern, deputy director of the Center for Science and Democracy at the Union of Concerned Scientists. He said the upcoming round of appointments will test whether EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is “remotely interested” in independent scientific advice. “He already has a parade of lobbyists and advisers providing him with the perspectives from oil, gas, and chemical companies. The Science Advisory Board is a check on political influence and can help the agency determine whether the special interests are telling it straight.”

What I find really hilarious in reading the article is its description of the various skeptics, almost all of which are qualified climate scientists. The article quotes their skeptical positions as if these positions are the insane ravings of an idiot, but everything these skeptics say is accurate and well documented by research over the past century. For example, there is this quote:

Another scientist, Craig Idso, is chairman of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, where he has written that “the modern rise in the air’s CO2 content is providing a tremendous economic benefit to global crop production.”

Yet another scientist, Richard Keen, is a meteorologist and author who traveled with the Heartland Institute to Rome in 2015 for a “prebuttal” to Pope Francis’s encyclical on climate change. There, he argued that “in the past 18 years and how many months, four months, there has been no global warming.” Another candidate, Anthony Lupo, is an atmospheric sciences professor at the University of Missouri. In 2014, he told a local Missouri media outlet, KOMU 8, that “I think it is rash to put the climate change completely on the blame of humans.”

Idso is correct. Crops benefit from more carbon dioxide. This is common knowledge in the agricultural community, and has been amply proven by numerous studies.

Keen is also correct. In 2015 there had been no warming for almost two decades, and that pause only ceased last year because of El Nino, and appears now to have resumed.

Lupo is also correct. The theory that human behavior is the sole cause of global warming has not been proven, and if anything, the failure of every computer model based on this theory to predict the pause in rising temperatures suggests it is wrong.

If anything, the article illustrates the ignorance of its author and the newspaper, both of whom appear completely unaware of the actual uncertainties that exist in the climate field.

Share

Trump administration shuts down NIH anti-gun research

The NIH has quietly shelved all funding for gun research, most of which had been instigated under the Obama administration as a propaganda tool to promote gun control.

The article from Science is remarkable — coming from a mainstream academic source — in that it provides a fair description of the perspective of the NRA and gun-owners.

Note: Reader Kirk noted my error in originally crediting this article to Nature, when it truth it was Science that published it. Post corrected. Sorry!

Share

Federal debt tops $20 trillion

The coming dark age: Because of the Democratic/Trump deal raising the debt limit, the federal government’s debt officially topped $20 trillion last week.

From March 16 through Sept. 7, every Daily Treasury Statement showed the total federal debt subject to the legal limit opening and closing each day at $19,808,747,000,000. That was because the previous suspension of the debt limit had expired on March 15 and the debt limit had been reset at the level the debt reached at the close of business that day–which was $19,808,772,381,624.74. The Treasury then started using what it calls “extraordinary measures” to keep the debt subject to the limit about $25 milion below the limit.

This is all a fraud. Not only do they cook the numbers to make the debt ceiling appear legal for as long as possible, the debt is actually far larger, as this doesn’t include the raids to the Social Security trust fund that Congress has routinely been making for the past few decades, and never paying back.

But hey, who cares? What is really important is that we call looters “heroes” and any cops who try to arrest them “racists!”

Share

Trump Justice Department will not prosecute Lois Lerner

Surprise, surprise! The Trump administration has decided that it will not consider prosecuting Lois Lerner for her harassment of conservative organizations when she worked for the IRS.

More and more, I think that this prediction of a Trump presidency, made in February 2016, will accurately portray most of the policies he achieves. This quote is especially clairvoyant:

The Senate and House remained strongly Republican, but they seemed to learn nothing. The promised repeal and replacement of Obamacare slipped from a Day One priority to a Day 90 priority to a “Somewhere down the road” priority. Trump also half-heartedly tried to build a wall, but then gave up, explaining, “Well, Mexico refuses to pay for it and we shouldn’t have to.” It was not long before Trump began to “grow in office,” and soon he was explaining how, “We really need these people here, these illegal people to do the dirty jobs Americans just won’t do. We need them and it would kill our economy if we stopped it.” He soon signed a comprehensive immigration law legalizing the millions of illegals already here and expanding legal immigration; there were no firm border security provisions in the bill. When confronted by a Fox News reporter at a news conference about this flip-flop, Trump responded, “That’s a very, very rude and stupid question coming from you. The voters, they understand you have to compromise and make deals and we’ve made a very strong deal. You are probably saying this because it is that time of the month and you women say crazy things then.”

He decided not to repudiate the Iran deal, claiming, “It seems to have been going very well.” The Iranians detonated a nuclear warhead in December 2017. Vladimir Putin sent his armored divisions into unoccupied Ukraine and reintegrated the country into Russia. President Trump called it, “Very disturbing, very scary, but it’s their internal business. It’s not our business, so we are staying out of it.” Trump’s 45% tariff on Chinese goods died in the House of Representatives, but only after Republicans beat back a coalition of Democrats and a few Trump-leaning Republicans.

Trump allied himself with Democrats frequently in a series of “deals” that sometimes passed, sometimes failed. For their part, the Democrats held their fire on President Trump and focused on the GOP Congress. But in the run-up to the 2018 mid-terms, the Democrats leveraged the fact that the economy was not improving and foreign policy fiascos like ISIS’ taking of all of Syria and expanding the caliphate. They turned on Donald Trump with a vengeance and re-took the Senate as well as many House seats.

While Trump does appear to be trying to rein in the out-of-control environmental movement with the federal government, and appears to be appointing good judges, when it comes to the swamp of Washington, do not expect him to drain any of it.

Share

Trump teams up with Democrats on debt limit deal

Trump today backed a Democratic proposal to only extend the debt limit by three months, instead of the Republican plan to extend that ceiling first 18 months, than six.

While it is clear the Democrats want more debt ceiling negotiations in order to force the Republicans to make repeated concessions each time, I find it disgusting that the Republican leadership is more interested in kicking the can down the road than to address the problem now. In a sense, this might be why Trump is siding with the Democrats, as it keeps the debt ceiling on the table as a political issue, and might eventually force these brainless cowards to eventually do something to gain some control over the budget.

Then again, it might not. It could also be that none of these politicians, including Trump, has any interest in controlling the budget, and are merely playing petty politics with the nation’s future.

Share

Trump administration to end climate panel

The Trump administration has decided to not renew a pro-global warming climate panel set to expire this week.

The panel is part of the National Climate Assessment, a group aimed at helping officials and policy makers integrate the US Government’s climate change analysis into their long-term planning. A mandate for the 15-member Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment is set to expire on Sunday, and will not be renewed.

The press will paint this panel as an objective collection of climate scientists put together to provide the president with good advice on the climate. In truth, it is a part of the propaganda machine for the global warming part of the climate science community, designed to push their conclusions while excluding any skeptical input.

Once again it appears that while Trump might be wishy-washy on many issues, on climate he is serious about dismantling the corruption that has worked its way into that field while eliminating the over-regulation that this corruption has imposed on American society.

Share

Judge comes down hard on IRS for its harassment of conservatives

Still working for the Democratic Party, with Trump’s approval! A judge has come down hard on the IRS in its stonewalling related to lawsuits and investigations of its harassment of conservative groups during Barack Obama’s administration.

A federal judge on Thursday ordered the IRS to name the specific employees the agency blames for targeting tea party groups for intrusive scrutiny and said the government must prove it has ceased the targeting.

Judge Reggie B. Walton also said the IRS must explain the reasons for the delays for 38 groups that are part of a lawsuit in the District of Columbia, where they are still looking for a full accounting of their treatment. Judge Walton approved another round of limited discovery in the case and laid out six questions that the IRS must answer, including the employees’ names, why the groups were targeted and how the IRS has tried to prevent a repeat.

The IRS has until October 16 to compile. The article notes a more significant aspect of this continuing scandal: Why hasn’t “drain the swamp” Trump done anything to clean house at the IRS? Why has he allowed the IRS to continue its stonewalling? And why hasn’t he fired IRS head John Koskinen, who has clearly obstructed the investigations, lied to Congress, and even worked to have evidence destroyed?

Share

How To Know You’re In a Mass Hysteria Bubble

Link here. Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, provides a very cogent analysis of the insanity of the liberal Democratic mindset today. His description of the event that triggered this hysteria is right on the money

On November 8th of 2016, half the country learned that everything they believed to be both true and obvious turned out to be wrong. The people who thought Trump had no chance of winning were under the impression they were smart people who understood their country, and politics, and how things work in general. When Trump won, they learned they were wrong. They were so very wrong that they reflexively (because this is how all brains work) rewrote the scripts they were seeing in their minds until it all made sense again. The wrong-about-everything crowd decided that the only way their world made sense, with their egos intact, is that either the Russians helped Trump win or there are far more racists in the country than they imagined, and he is their king. Those were the seeds of the two mass hysterias we witness today.

Trump supporters experienced no trigger event for cognitive dissonance when Trump won. Their worldview was confirmed by observed events.

.

Read it all to find out if you are in the bubble or not.

Posted north of Phoenix.

Share

China admits it will do nothing to stop North Korea from attacking US

In an official editorial, China has admitted that it will do nothing to stop North Korea from using missiles to attack the US territory of Guam.

Beijing is not able to persuade Washington or Pyongyang to back down at this time. It needs to make clear its stance to all sides and make them understand that when their actions jeopardize China’s interests, China will respond with a firm hand.

China should also make clear that if North Korea launches missiles that threaten US soil first and the US retaliates, China will stay neutral. If the US and South Korea carry out strikes and try to overthrow the North Korean regime and change the political pattern of the Korean Peninsula, China will prevent them from doing so.

In other words, China will not stop North Korea from carrying out its attacks, but if it does so China will also not do anything if the U.S. responds.

The editorial is intellectually dishonest however. It also states,

The real danger is that such a reckless game may lead to miscalculations and a strategic “war.” That is to say, neither Washington nor Pyongyang really wants war, but a war could break out anyway as they do not have the experience of putting such an extreme game under control. [emphasis mine]

The highlighted words are simply wrong. It has been very clear now for several years that North Korea is eager for war, and has been doing everything it can to instigate a conflict.

Share

Global warming activists tremble as Trump administration reviews their work

This could be a victory: The science journal Nature today published a story, entitled “Fears rise as Trump officials take reins on US climate assessment”, which described the terror that is spreading through the global warming climate field because the Trump administration is bringing in skeptical scientists to review the work done by these government scientists.

Many climate scientists are particularly uneasy about the potential for interference by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), one of 13 agencies that must approve the science report before its expected release in November. EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, who rejects well-established climate science, has raised the possibility of organizing an adversarial ‘red team–blue team’ review of such research. And he has help from the Heartland Institute, a think tank in Chicago, Illinois, that promotes scepticism about climate change.

“We can’t allow science to be held hostage,” says Donald Wuebbles, a climate scientist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and co-chair of the report. “I’m hopeful it won’t get to that, because it would look really bad for the administration to fight this.”

Well, ain’t that just too damn bad! This fake scientist seems to think that his work is so pure it shouldn’t be challenged or peer reviewed. The Nature article at the link is itself an example of fake news, as the author never bothered to interview anyone from the Trump administration, or quote or name any of the skeptical scientists doing the reviewing, something that any good journalist specializing in this field should have no trouble identifying. Had he, he might have found the skepticism reasonable. In fact, the scientific method is founded on skepticism. To believe that your work should never be questioned only proves that you aren’t really a scientist at all.

Be prepared for a lot of squealing when these reviewers step in and request that this climate assessment get reworked to remove any global warming propaganda from it.

Share

Trump fires chief of staff Priebus

Change! President Trump has replaced his chief of staff Reince Priebus.

The article gives two basic reasons. First, Priebus was there to help Trump get his legislative agenda passed. The failure to pass any Obamcare repeal was laid at his doorstep. Second, it appears that Priebus is suspected of being the source for many of the leaks that have plagued the Trump administration.

Priebus’s removal as well as Sean Spicer’s last week removes two prominent inside-the-beltway Republicans from the Trump White House.

Share

Mueller widens witch hunt investigation

Special counsel Robert Mueller today widened his investigation on President Trump’s contacts with Russia during the campaign to now include Trump’s entire business transactions.

I haven’t posted anything about the Russian collusion story until now, because on its face it is absurd. As noted repeatedly by even Trump’s critics, there is no evidence of any illegal acts by anyone. Moreover, the media focus on the Russians distracts from the heart of the DNC hack, that it revealed illegal pay-offs and corruption by Hillary Clinton, John Podesta, and others in the Democratic Party. I don’t really care that much how these emails were obtained since what they uncovered is far worse.

What prompts me to post now is to underline the corruption of Robert Mueller himself. It is already well known that the investigation team he has put together includes at least seven Democratic donors, including an attorney who donated $34,000 to Democratic candidates. What I want to highlight is his blatant partisan actions to help cover up the IRS scandal for the Obama administration. I only remembered this recently, but when Mueller was called to testify to the House about his newly begun FBI investigation into that scandal, he couldn’t name the head of that investigation, even though he was the man who would have appointed such a person only a month prior.

I once again have embedded below the fold Mueller’s testimony in 2013 before Congress. Not only does he not know who is running his so-called IRS scandal investigation, he admits that not one victim of the IRS scandal had yet been contacted. In fact, none of these people were ever contacted, and that investigation never took place. Mueller stone-walled it for Obama, so that administration and president could get away with their use of the IRS as a weapon against their opponents. And of course, the Democratic mainstream media assisted them in this stone-wall by never pursuing the story. They let it fall, as they do today with the content of those hacked Clinton emails, into the memory hole.

And even if there were improprieties by Trump and his campaign, does anyone with even the slightest objectivity believe that Mueller’s investigation is going to non-partisan? I don’t. This is a witch-hunt, and it always has been.

And if you disagree with me I dare you to watch the video below. Mueller comes off clearly as a tool of the Democrats, something he still is today.
» Read more

Share

Republican health tweak of Obamacare dead, Senate to vote for straight repeal

This is a victory: The Republican leadership in the Senate, lacking the votes to pass their own version of Obamacare, have decided to instead go for full repeal.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell bowed to pressure tonight from conservatives — and President Trump — to bring up a straight repeal of most of the Affordable Care Act as the next step now that the Senate health care bill appears to be dead. It will be based on the repeal bill Congress passed in 2015, which then-President Barack Obama vetoed.

His statement: “Regretfully, it is now apparent that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failure of Obamacare will not be successful. So, in the coming days, the Senate will vote to take up … a repeal of Obamacare with a two-year delay to provide for a stable transition period to a patient-centered health care system that gives Americans access to quality, affordable health care.”

McConnell’s hand was forced when two conservative senators, Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) announced earlier today that they would not vote for the bill.

This is what they should have done from the beginning. Granted, it is likely to fail because of Democratic opposition, but then it will be clear going into the next election who is standing in the way of fixing the problem. Had they passed any version of their turkey of a bill, the health insurance business would have continued to fail, but they would no longer have had clean hands. It would have become their problem, and it would have cost them votes in 2018.

Now, things will be clean, and we will get to see who really is on our side, from both parties. Expect several Republican senators especially to suddenly “evolve” and decide that they can’t go along with the very repeal they’ve voted for repeatedly in the past, because it might “hurt people.”

Share

Trump administration to increase use of asset forfeiture

Theft by government: Attorney General Jeff Sessions today told a gathering of district attorneys that the Trump administration intends to increase the use of asset forfeiture, the procedure where the government steals private property merely because it suspects it might have been related to a criminal act, even if the owners are completely innocent.

Although the details have yet to be released, Sessions’ directive appears likely to loosen the restrictions on “adoptions” of forfeiture cases by the federal government—an alarming prospect for opponents of asset forfeiture. “Reversing the ban on adoptive seizures would revive one of the most notorious forms of forfeiture abuse,” Sheth said. “So-called ‘adoptive’ seizures allow state and local law enforcement to circumvent state-law limitations on civil forfeiture by seizing property and then transferring it to federal prosecutors for forfeiture under federal law. Bringing back adoptive seizures would create a road map to circumvent state-level forfeiture reforms.”

Sessions’ upcoming directive to increase asset forfeiture comes as little surprise. Sessions, a former prosecutor and U.S. senator, has been a stalwart defender of asset forfeiture throughout his career. He has already dismantled Obama-era directives on drug sentencing guidelines and ordered a review of all of the existing consent agreements between the Justice Department and police departments that were found to be violating residents’ constitutional rights.

This is only more evidence that both parties in Washington are corrupt power-grabbers who don’t give a damn about the Constitution and the real rule of law. Sessions might be good in some areas, but in others he is as bad as Eric Holder.

Share

Pablum from Pence on space

If you want to waste about about 25 minutes of your life, you can listen to the speech that Vice President Mike Pence gave today at the Kennedy Space Center here, beginning at the 49:30 minute mark.

My advice is that you don’t do it. Pence said nothing. He handed out a lot of empty promises and cliches, without any specifics or details of any kind. He confirmed for me what I have suspected of Pence for several years, that despite the fact that he lives and breathes a conservative and honorable personal life, as a politician he is a hack.

He made a big deal about the recreation of the National Space Council, which he now leads. However, as this article by Eric Berger properly noted the people who seem to be exerting the most influence on that council, on Trump, and on Pence are from the big space companies that have spent more than a decade and a half spending about $40 billion trying to build a big rocket (SLS) to fly a single unmanned test flight of the Orion capsule.

My pessimism here might be misplaced. We still do not know who will be on this space council. Furthermore, the Trump administration has been very good at doing a lot of public relations and soft stroking of its opponents in order to put them off guard prior to hitting them hard, where it hurts. This might be what Pence was doing here.

Nonetheless, the lack of any substance in Pence’s remarks makes me fear that he will be easily influenced by the big players who simply want the federal cash cow to continue sending them money, whether or not they ever build anything.

Share

Senate introduces its version of Trumpcare

Failure theater: The Senate today introduced its version of an Obamacare replacement, and proved once again that the Republican leadership in Congress has no interest in repealing Obamacare and the parts of that law that make it economically unsustainable.

The most popular provisions of Obamacare are kept in place in the bill, including language allowing children to stay on a parent’s health insurance plan until age 26 and preserving coverage for people with pre-existing illnesses.

The bill does repeal some of Obamacare, but without freeing the insurance company from the requirement to accept anyone, whether they are sick or not, makes it impossible for the entire health insurance business to make any profit. It also does not appear that this bill frees insurance companies to offer any kind of insurance they wish, including the popular and less expensive catastrophic insurance plans that Obamacare banned.

The problem here is that the Republican leadership is timid. They fear the squealing of pigs, and thus attempt to come up with plans that will please those pigs. The result? A mish-mosh that no one likes and that solves nothing.

Update: The Senate’s own freedom caucus speaks: Senators Ted Cruz, Ron Johnson, Mike Lee, and Rand Paul reject Senate bill, as written.

Share

Trump administration continues to clean house at EPA

The Trump administration this week announced that it will not renew the appointment of 38 scientists to a key EPA science panel.

All board members whose three-year appointments expire in August will not get renewals, Robert Kavlock, acting head of EPA’s Office of Research and Development, said in the email, which was obtained by E&E News.

Because of the need to reconstitute the board, EPA is also canceling all subcommittee meetings planned for late summer and fall, Kavlock said. “We are hopeful that an updated BOSC Executive Committee and the five subcommittees can resume their work in 2018 and continue providing ORD with thoughtful recommendations and comments,” he wrote in urging departing members to reapply.

As the article notes, some Democratic pigs are squealing over this, but the Trump administration is only following the law. And considering how political and anti-business the EPA has become in recent years, a full review of all committee members seems entirely appropriate and reasonable.

Share

15 absurd over-reactions to Trump’s withdrawal from climate treaty

Link here. Though Trump’s rejection of the climate deal is only tangentially related to the federal budget, it definitely has caused a lot of pigs to squeal. I especially like #13 from the leftwing American Civil Liberties Union, because it encompasses every absurd aspect of the modern left’s methods of debate:

Pulling out of the Paris Agreement would be a massive step back for racial justice, and an assault on communities of color across the U.S. — ACLU National (@ACLU) June 1, 2017

Read them all. And remember that these reactions came only an hour or so after Trump made his announcement. Expect even more silliness from the left in the days to come.

Share

Trump exits Paris climate agreement

As he had promised during the campaign, President Trump today announced that he was withdrawing the United States from the Paris climate treaty that Obama had agreed to (but was never ratified by the Senate).

More here.

Despite Trump’s moderate liberal leanings on many issues (budgets, healthcare), it does appear that when it comes to the environmental movement’s corruption of science and overuse of regulation he is quite willing to do things that will upset the elitist ruling class that has done such a bad job of ruling for the past two decades.

Share

Trump to keep U.S. embassy in Tel Aviv

President Trump today signed a waiver allowing him to keep the U.S. Israeli embassy in Tel Aviv, rather than moving to Jerusalem as he promised repeatedly on the campaign trail.

This is not the most important political story of the day, but it illustrates what we can expect from Trump. In the end, he backs down under pressure from the Washington elitist community. For example, even though his proposed federal budget suggested a willingness to cut the deficit and eliminate whole agencies, I have doubts he will succeed in getting Congress to agree to any of those cuts.

This is also why I have not yet posted on the various rumors claiming that he plans to exit the Paris climate treaty. Until I actually see him do it, I do not believe it.

Share

Sixty-six programs slated for elimination in Trump budget

The Trump budget followed through in one area very clearly: It proposes to completely eliminate sixty-six government programs.

The programs eliminated would only save $26.7 billion, which in terms of the deficit is chicken-feed. Still it would be a step in the right direction.

The pigs are squealing however, including one recent failed presidential candidate:
Clinton: Trump Budget Shows ‘Unimaginable Level of Cruelty’

Based on past experience, expect the Republican leadership in Congress to gut most of these cuts. The budget will grow. The deficit will grow. The federal debt will grow. The power of the people in Washington will grow. And we will be one step closer to bankruptcy and collapse.

Share

Trump budget released only to be immediately trashed

Today the Trump administration released its proposed 2018 budget for the federal government. Here is a good article on what that budget proposed for NASA.

The Trump administration’s fiscal 2018 budget request includes $19.1 billion for NASA, a $561 million decrease over previously enacted levels that would reduce the number of Earth science missions, eliminate the agency’s education office and do away with the Obama administration’s plans to robotically retrieve a piece of an asteroid as a precursor to eventual flights to Mars.

The budget closely reflects the administration’s blueprint, released in March, and overall, NASA’s acting administrator said America’s space program remains healthy and suffered relatively modest cuts compared to other federal agencies.

Though the NASA budget did include the cancellation of a handful of Earth Science projects as well as a cut in the Earth science budget, those cuts were nowhere near what had been hinted at previously.

The Trump administration has made no secret of its skepticism about global warming and its presumed causes and impacts and as expected, the budget eliminates funding for five Earth science missions and instruments. Earth science would receive $1.8 billion overall, reflecting a reduction of nearly $170 million. “The hard choices are still there, and we can’t do everything,” Lightfoot said. But the budget “still includes significant Earth science efforts, including 18 Earth observing missions in space as well as airborne missions.”

That’s a reduction of less than 10% in the total Earth science budget, hardly a catastrophe. The overall budget proposal was a little more daring, calling for a 30% cut at the EPA, and a 16% cut at Commerce, mostly in NOAA.

What does this all mean? Nothing. A president’s budget proposal is generally only a statement of desires. It has no force of law. Congress decides how to spend money, and the Republicans controlling this Congress are not really interested in cutting anything. In fact, the pigs have already begun to squeal, including a complete rejection of the budget by many Republican leaders in Congress.

‘President Trump’s $603 billion defense budget request is inadequate to the challenges we face, illegal under current law, and part of an overall budget proposal that is dead on arrival in Congress,’ said Arizona Sen. John McCain.

The administration didn’t seem to signal its own vote of confidence by releasing the document during President Trump’s first overseas trip.

Longtime GOP Rep. Hal Rogers of Kentucky, a longtime appropriator, declared proposed cuts to safety net and environmental proposals ‘draconian.’

‘I don’t think the president’s budget is going anywhere,’ said Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, asked if he’s concerned about the message sent by slashing the Medicaid program for the poor and disabled.

That’s only a sampling. Essentially, these Republicans have no interest in gaining control of the out-of-control federal budget. They like having that budget out-of-control, as it feeds money to their friends and partners whom then line their pockets with campaign contributions.

I should note that I fully expect Trump to bow to their demands, and back off. When it has come to budget matters, he has so far shown no stomach for the fight.

Share

White House decision on embassy move only after Trump’s Middle East trip

The White House has denied reports that they have decided not to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, and have instead said that the decision on whether to move the embassy will only be made after Trump’s Middle East trip.

Since neither story identified the White House official making the claims, either for or against the move, I suppose we should file this whole thing under fake news. These are unsubstantiated leaks, and should not be taken seriously.

Share
1 2 3 5