Closing Thought–26Jul17

In The Land Of “True Believers”!

I have a couple of friends that are supporters of Trump…they are die hard believers.

I ask why and usually get the same answer ….”he has done what he promised on the campaign trail”….

Then I ask what exactly has he done?

The first reaction is….”he beat Clinton”……(really?  A good sled dog would have beaten Clinton)…..

So I got to wondering just what makes one a Trump “true believer”…..and Salon provided me with an answer so I did not have to give myself a migraine trying to understand…..

When Donald Trump gave the commencement address at Liberty University this spring, he told the graduates that “America has always been the land of dreams because America is a nation of true believers.” Trump argued that, in America, “we don’t worship government; we worship God.”

Source: Inside the minds of Trump’s “true believers” – Salon.com

After reading the article I still do not completely understand the blind obedience of his supporters.

Maybe if we can understand why the country is so divided……

In research that should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with the current political climate in the US, a new study discovered that supporters of either candidate in the last Presidential election were more likely to accept new data if it agreed with their desired outcome.

They recruited more than 800 individuals and had each indicate who they wanted to see win the 2016 Presidential election, as well as who they believed would win. Afterwards, each participant was presented with new information that was either consistent or inconsistent with their desired outcome, and again asked which candidate they believed would ultimately win the election.What they found, the authors explained, is that the participants were more likely to update their predictions if the information was consistent with their desired outcome, and were less likely to change their beliefs if the data was inconsistent with their preferred result.

Source: New study discovers why American politics is so divided – Redorbit

It is all so confusing…..

Could it be as simple as American politics is just screwed up?

Off I go……a cold beer and some cheese dip awaits…..have a day and please come back tomorrow…..be well, be safe…..chuq

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Time On The Virtual Couch

Disclaimer:  I personally think that shrinks are a waste of time and money….a good bartender is more accurate and profound than any shrink I have ever met.  I am sure that they may have helped someone out there but in my situation they were useless…if not worse.

With that said there is a news piece swirling around the net about our fearless leader, DJ Trump…..and his mental status.

The story is about the “Goldwater Rule”……(how many of you went…HUH?)

The Goldwater rule is the informal name given to Section 7 in the American Psychiatric Association‘s (APA) Principles of Medical Ethics,  which states it is unethical for psychiatrists to give a professional opinion about public figures they have not examined in person, and from whom they have not obtained consent to discuss their mental health in public statements.

Now that you are caught up on the “rule” let us continue……

A psychiatric group has told its members they’re not obligated to adhere to something called the “Goldwater Rule,” which has long prevented members of the profession from commenting on the mental health of public figures. The American Psychoanalytic Association emailed its members this month to that effect, though the Atlantic explains it wasn’t so much a change in policy as a reminder that the Goldwater Rule is not officially part of the group’s ethical guidelines. One thing of note: This APA has 3,500 members, but the larger American Psychiatric Association, with 37,000 members, still has the rule in place. The development comes amid lots of chatter about President Trump’s behavior, which is “so different from anything we’ve seen before” in a president, a past leader of the smaller APA tells STAT. Coverage:

  • Milestone? The move “represents the first significant crack in the profession’s decades-old united front aimed at preventing experts from discussing the psychiatric aspects of politicians’ behavior,” writes Sharon Begley at STAT. In a statement, however, a spokesperson emphasized that the group isn’t encouraging members to go against the Goldwater Rule, notes Time. It’s just that “we don’t want to prevent our members from using their knowledge responsibly,” adds the former leader.
  • Still opposed: The American Psychiatric Association reiterated that its own policy is unchanged. In March, the group formally reaffirmed its view that it’s unethical for doctors to speculate on the mental health of a person they haven’t personally evaluated. The full policy is here.
  • ‘Gag rule’?: Last week, Dr. Leonard Glass of Harvard wrote an essay in Psychiatric Times likening the Goldwater prohibition to a “gag rule” and calling it “an unacceptable infringement on my right and duty.” In the essay, he resigned from the American Psychiatric Association.
  • Why Goldwater: In 1964, about 1,200 psychiatrists responding to a magazine survey declared conservative candidate Barry Goldwater unfit for the presidency, explains the Los Angeles Times. He later sued for libel and won, and the larger APA’s ethics board established the rule in 1973.

An expert weighs in: You don’t have to search the topic long before finding someone arguing that Trump has narcissistic personality disorder. Well, the psychiatrist who literally wrote the definition for that disorder wrote a much-publicized letter to the editor earlier this year to the New York Times in which he states clearly that Trump doesn’t meet the criteria. “He may be a world-class narcissist,” writes Allen Frances, “but this doesn’t make him mentally ill, because he does not suffer from the distress and impairment required to diagnose mental disorder.”

Now if you have made it this far…..

If you are a regular reader then you already know that I am by no stretch of the imagination a Trump supporter…..so this conclusion may be a bit of a surprise………

I agree with the “Goldwater Rule”…..there should be NO analysis of the person without a professional visit and then the privacy of the person should be protected.

So these reports are nothing more than a MSM reach for readers…..serves little purpose of good…..it only feeds the innuendos…..

With that said……I do feel that he is NOT a person that should ever have been elected….he is suppose to represent the people of this country and he fails miserably on that front.  I dislike the way he mocks people that is not what a good leader does…..he cannot remember that his stay in DC is about the country not his personal agenda…..I personally feel that he does have some sort of disorder that needs immediate treatment.

Move America forward or go the Hell away!

A ‘Better Deal’ For America

How many times have you read something similar?

Ever since their massive defeat in 2016 the Dems have been looking for their new niche before the next election…..they are hoping for a little redemption in the eyes of the American voter.

Let’s be honest…their message sucked all the way to the voting booth…..as an opposition party the Dems are just pathetic…..(so says an article in the Guardian)….

Six months into Donald Trump’s term, and Democratic politician’s ability to be an opposition party is, in a word, pathetic.

When the poll came out saying that “Democrats stand for nothing more than opposing” Trump, I thought to myself, ‘If only that were true!’” But they can’t even do that well. When House Democratic Caucus chairman Joe Crowley was asked by the Associated Press just what his party’s core message was, he “hesitated” and then said, “That message is being worked on.”

Source: The Democrats’ performance as an opposition party? Pathetic | Steven W Thrasher | Opinion | The Guardian

They have been going thru a party “autopsy” to find the right hook to get into the skin of the voter…..

After 10 months of agony this is what they have come up with to save the Party from oblivion…..and this is the “message” they worked on and settled on as the next step in the process…..

Still smarting from November’s brutal election and looking to push a more populist agenda in the lead-up to the 2018 midterms, Democratic Party leaders gathered in the small town of Berryville, Va., on Monday to announce their new “Better Deal” plan, the AP reports. “The focus starts on economic issues,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer told reporters. “That’s where the American people are hurting. That’s what we most felt was missing in the past in the last several elections.” Here are some of the plan’s details:

  • Cost of living: Democrats promise to lower the cost of prescription drugs and college tuition, fight for “families struggling with high monthly bills,” and crack down on monopolies.
  • Higher wages: The “Better Deal” plan promises millions of good-paying jobs, a higher minimum wage, investment in infrastructure, and an aggressive crackdown on corporations that outsource American jobs.
  • 21st-century economy: Democrats say they are committed to providing tax breaks to employers who offer workforce training, bringing high-speed Internet to the whole country, and offering millions of apprenticeships.
  • What’s missing: Noticeably absent from the “Better Deal” plan is any mention of the social issues that motivate many Democratic voters but that may turn off the rural, blue-collar voters who abandoned the party for Donald Trump last year. Those include immigration, LGBT rights, and abortion, Politico reports.
  • Strategy: Democrats want to talk about “how working- and middle-class incomes have stagnated as the costs of housing, health care, education, and everything else have continued to increase,” writes Ben Mathis-Lilley at Slate.
  • Critique:Roll Call reports that it took the Twitterverse no time at all to point out the similarity between the “Better Deal” slogan—”Better Skills, Better Jobs, Better Wages”—and that of pizza delivery giant Papa John’s: “Better Ingredients. Better Pizza.” Columnist Jonathan Allen goes deeper on what he thinks is not only a bad slogan, but a “muddled message” overall.

WORDS!

They are as empty as the “plan” they purpose.

Personally the ‘Better Deal’ sounds a lot like the deal they offered with Clinton….this ‘hook’ will not work…it is all promises that they can not deliver….

Simplistic jingoism won the last election…..not a complex ‘plan’.

Maybe that would be a better place to start.

This will insure more losses for the Dems.

In short, Pathetic as usual!

Where, Oh Where Has Al-Qaeda Gone?

Does anyone remember Al-Qaeda?

That was the group that masterminded the 9/11 attacks that killed thousands of Americans.

Their leader Osama evaded the US troops for years before we tracked him down and removed his face…..

What has AQ been up to since 9/11 attacks and the death of Osama?

I am so glad that you asked that question.

Despite ostensibly being the United States’ “Public Enemy No. 1” following the 9/11 attacks, the international terror group al-Qaeda has instead been a beneficiary of U.S. military aid in the post-9/11 world, particularly in Syria. With the Syrian conflict well into its sixth year, al-Qaeda’s active branch in that war, widely known as Jabhat al-Nusra or the al-Nusra Front, has continually received arms and military protection from the United States, an outcome that is clearly counterproductive to the U.S.’ global “War on Terror.”

Yet, while the arming and propping up of al-Qaeda in Syria may not serve the U.S.’ fundamental goal of eradicating terrorism, it certainly has helped the U.S. political establishment pursue a decades-old goal of regime change in regionally strategic Syria.

Source: Al-Qaeda And The United States An Unlikely Alliance In The War On Terror

That’s right sports fans…….the US arch enemy is now our butt buddy in the fight against ISIS….

But a decision made by the cracker jack foreign policy team of the Trump admin has decided to end one of their many successful programs….

President Trump has decided to halt the CIA’s years-long covert program to arm and train moderate Syrian rebels battling the regime of Bashar al-Assad. Russia had long pushed the United States to end the program, per the AP. The phasing out of the secret program was reported by the Washington Post on Wednesday. Officials told the newspaper that ending the operation reflects Trump’s interest in finding ways to work with Russia. The program was a key component begun by the Obama administration in 2013 to put pressure on Assad to relinquish power, but even its supporters have questioned its usefulness since Moscow sent forces to Syria two years later.

Russia long saw the anti-Assad program as an assault on its interests. Ending the plan is in part an acknowledgment of the United States’ limited ability to remove Assad from power. The White House had previously condemned Assad and just three months ago Trump launched dozens of airstrikes against a Syrian air base after the United States accused the Syrian regime of using chemical weapons on its own people. White House Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders declined to comment on the report and said she did not know if the move was discussed during a pair of conversations—including one just revealed on Tuesday—that Trump had with Putin at an international summit earlier this month.

With this program ending will the US return to the sights of AQ?

Think about it!

AQ in Syria is fighting Assad….Russia is an alloy of Assad….Trump recently had an impromptu meeting with Putin

As I have said on numerous occasions…the Middle East will get messy in the months and years to come…..even with the defeat of ISIS.

Whatcha think?

The US Can No Longer Afford War!

The War on Terror has costs the nation about $2 trillion (yes that is a “T” for trillion)……chasing terrorists around the world has lead to adventurism by the US on every continent of the globe.

It is getting out of hand….but that does not stop these war hawks for demanding more and more money to fight wars we do not need.  Time to think outside of the Conflict box…..

According to the CBO, fiscal reality is coming, and far faster than most Washington policymakers appear to realize.

Republican presidents and Congresses claim to support fiscal responsibility and balanced budgets. Yet the previous GOP president, George W. Bush, was a wild spender. The Republican-controlled Congress that served alongside him was no better.

So too it looks to be the case with President Donald Trump and the current GOP-dominated legislative branch. The former doesn’t want to touch entitlements. The latter doesn’t like the big cuts President Trump proposed in discretionary outlays in areas such as the State Department. And most of the Republicans are clamoring to fill the Pentagon’s coffers: the only question is how much, how quickly.

Source: America Literally Can’t Afford More Military Adventurism | RealClearWorld

It is your money they are spending on all these wars…is it not about time that you let your feelings be known?

I mean according to studies most Americans are in fear of a major war in the future…..

on-stop smaller wars, and officials always playing up the risk of bigger wars to get bigger military budgets have always had Americans worried about a new major war being on the horizon, but the latest NBC/SurveyMonkey poll shows that such fears have been growing dramatically in recent months.

This new poll showed an overwhelming majority, 76% of Americans, are now worried that the US will get drawn into a new “major war” in the next four years. This is an increase of 10% over the last time the question was asked, in mid-February.

As far as who the US might get into that major war with, the plurality went to North Korea, with 41% of Americans believing that the isolated nation is the “greatest immediate threat” to the US. ISIS was second at 28%, Russia at 18%, with China and Iran rounding out the top 5.

(antiwar.com)

I am for a more diplomatic approach over a military force one…..but that is a dream that will not be possible as long as we have an anti-diplomacy president…..diplomacy is much cheaper than force…..