Closing Thought #2–10Dec18

Today in history my state, Mississippi, became the 20th state of the Union……1817.

“Pretty Undisciplined”!

Something that I have saying since 2016…..and yes it is referring to our dear President Trump……

Well ex-SecState Rex Tillerson has confirmed my conclusion……during an interview with CBS Tillerson opened up…..

Rex Tillerson has been relatively tight-lipped about his time in the Trump White House. But, some nine months after Trump fired him (an “unceremonious firing by tweet,” Politico recalls), the former secretary of state has finally spoken publicly about his interactions with the president in a “rare interview” with Bob Schieffer of CBS, the Washington Post reports, adding that in the interview “he didn’t call Trump a ‘moron,’ but he didn’t exactly suggest that Trump was a scholar.” Tillerson did reportedly say that the president is “pretty undisciplined,” which was a challenge for Tillerson “coming from the disciplined, highly process-oriented ExxonMobil corporation.” Here’s more from Tillerson’s interview with Schieffer:

  • On Trump clashing with Tillerson: “Obviously we are starkly different in our styles. We did not have a common value system. When the president would say, ‘Here’s what I want to do and here’s how I want to do it,’ I’d have to say to him, ‘Mr. President, I understand what you want to do, but you can’t do it that way. It violates the law. It violates a treaty.’ You know, he got really frustrated.”
  • On Trump’s leadership style: “He acts on his instincts; in some respects, that looks like impulsiveness. But it’s not his intent to act on impulse. I think he really is trying to act on his instincts.”
  • On Trump’s decision-making: “[Trump] doesn’t like to read, doesn’t read briefing reports, doesn’t like to get into the details of a lot of things, but rather just kind of says, ‘This is what I believe.’”

Life is good when those once close to Our Dear Supreme Leader confirms my observations…..

A smile to end my posting day…..

Niger Attack Update

Closing Thought–10Dec18

Back in 2017 a US Special Ops team was attacked and 4 members were killed in the West African nation of Niger…..an investigation has been on-going and in May the press was informed…..https://lobotero.com/2018/07/10/niger-update-3/

This is the press briefing……

The results of the Niger ambush investigation was briefed to members of the press on Thursday, May 10, 2018. The Pentagon aired the one-hour long briefing and question and answer period video online. The three briefers were Marine Corps General Thomas Waldhauser (commander of U.S. Africa Command), Army Major General Roger Cloutier (AFRICOM’s Chief of Staff and investigating officer), and Robert S. Karem (Assistant Secretary of Defense International Security Affairs).

The investigation on the deaths of the four Soldiers from the 3rd Special Forces Group killed in Niger was conducted under Army Regulation 15-6. Defense Secretary James Mattis concurred with its conclusions. The SECDEF has directed the appropriate commands to change doctrine, training, and procedures where necessary.

http://www.sof.news/special-forces/niger-ambush-investigation/

The SecDef Mattis erupted violently when he heard about the inquiry into the deaths……

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis was livid last month when he summoned top military officials to a video conference at the Pentagon to press them about an investigation into a 2017 ambush in Niger that killed four Americans on a Green Beret team. His anger, Pentagon officials said, came from seeing news reports that junior officers were being reprimanded for the botched Niger mission while the officers directly above them were not.

Days later, a senior officer who had largely escaped punishment was told he would be reprimanded. Another senior officer’s actions before and around the time of the mission were also under new scrutiny.

This is not the only investigation that is a pile of steaming manure….CYA all around.

Gen. Kelly Goes Bye Bye

Another One Bites The Dust!

John Kelly has been the Trump Chief of Staff since the early days of the admin….once Priebus got on the wrong side of Our Supreme Leader….Kelly was an adult in an infantile White House only he could bring sanity to the Oval Office…..well that did not work out as thought…..his spine was not as rigid as we were told.

Personally, I thought in the beginning that he might be a good choice but early on it was illustrated that he would not be anything other than another “yes” man without a spine.

Well word has come out that he will take a powder at the end of this year…..

– It’s official: John Kelly is leaving the White House. “John Kelly will be leaving toward the end of the year,” said President Trump while heading out for the Army-Navy game Saturday, USA Today reports. Rumors had been swirling after White House sources said Kelly was on his way out—and Nick Ayers, Vice President Mike Pence’s most senior aide, might be taking his place, per the Wall Street Journal. “Stop calling John [Kelly] for anything,” President Trump was quoted as saying. “Call Nick. He’s my guy.” But Trump aides warned that Ayers was more a Pence advocate, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reportedly criticized Ayers’ foreign-policy skills. On the plus side, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner—who have bristled under Kelly’s command-and-control style as chief of staff—are said to be pro-Ayers.

Kelly repeatedly clashed with Trump and lost some West Wing authority during his 17-month tenure, per CNN. A former Marine Corps general, Kelly imposed discipline on a freewheeling White House but saw Trump work around his who-gets-to-see-Trump-when rules. Kelly also made his own problems, erupting in a profanity-laced exchange with national security adviser John Bolton, engaging in a “near brawl” with informal Trump adviser Corey Lewandowski, slamming Rep. Frederica Wilson with false information, and apparently mishandling the abuse scandal around ex-staff secretary Rob Porter. Kelly also denied reports that he’d called Trump “an idiot” and considered himself “the lone bulwark against catastrophe” in Trump’s White House. Trump called Kelly “a great guy” in announcing his departure.

They say that the Chief of Staff for Pence will be chosen to take Kelly’s place at the side of Trump…..well maybe not……

President Donald Trump’s top pick to replace chief of staff John Kelly, Nick Ayers, is no longer expected to fill the role, the AP reports. Ayers, who is chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, was seen as the favorite for the job when Trump announced Saturday that Kelly would leave around year’s end. But a White House official said Sunday that Trump and Ayers could not reach agreement on Ayers’ length of service and that he would instead assist the president from outside the administration. Ayers confirmed the decision in a tweet Sunday, thanking Trump and Pence for giving him the opportunity to work in the White House: “I will be departing at the end of the year but will work with the #MAGA team to advance the cause,” he said. (He was actually a somewhat controversial choice.)

It was not immediately clear whether Trump had a new favorite for the post. The official was not authorized to discuss the personnel issue by name and spoke on condition of anonymity. Ayers and Trump had discussed the job for months. The new hire was to be key to a West Wing reshuffling to shift focus toward the 2020 re-election campaign and the challenge of governing with Democrats in control of the House. President Donald Trump is considering four people as he determines who will be his next chief of staff, per the AP. A person familiar with Trump’s thinking says the director of the Office of Management and Budget, Mick Mulvaney, is among those under consideration to replace John Kelly.

Well CRAP!

Who will be the next person in DC to prove that they have NO spine?

Just A Thought!

Where Oh Where Did The Economy Go?

If you are a junkie for this president then you will know about the extremely good economy that he is presiding over, right?

Then explain the yo-yo effect in the last week.  Something has investors nervous.  Wassup wit dat?

We hear that hundreds of thousands of jobs are being created…..or the factories that are re-opening….on and on…..but just how good is this economy for those that do not have legacy money or lots of zeros in a bank account?

The U.S. mobility rate dropped again to a new low in 2017, with just 10.1% of Americans moving homes, according to new data from the Census Bureau.

Why it matters: Economic opportunity isn’t enough to get people moving anymore. And less mobility could mean the wealthy areas of the U.S. continue to accumulate wealth, while the poorer areas will remain poor because people are less likely to move for better jobs and companies are less likely to move for cheaper labor.

https://www.axios.com/americans-not-moving-economy-booming-mobility-acea1512-0f7d-45e2-a8b1-dd8ea02ea1bb.html

With all the great news about the economy then why is there still abject poverty?  Why is that?

What does it mean to be poor? Currently there are two basic ways to define poverty. To get a better measure of who needs help — and a better sense of how to provide it — society needs a third definition.

The first definition is absolute poverty — essentially, material destitution. Human beings need food, water and shelter, and if we can’t afford these things, life is pretty miserable. In the U.S., the federal government has poverty guidelines that are based on food consumption: If you make less than about three times the minimum amount people need to spend on food each year, you’re poor.

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-11-26/poverty-in-america-greater-than-statistics-indicate

THe American Dream is dead….dead….dead…..and who can we say killed it?

Donald Trump, during a recent stop on his “Anarchy in the UK” tour, argued that the mass influx of immigrants into Europe is causing Great Britain and other nations to “lose their culture.” The fear of cultural dilution and transformation as a consequence of shifting demographics is widespread, and it resonates in the United States, too, especially among those who support the current president.

Stephen Bannon, Tucker Carlson, and other popular right-wing figures have warned of threats to national identity in an American context, contending that Mexicans will not assimilate and that Islam is incompatible with liberal democracy and secular governance. Liberals and libertarians often respond by recalling the long tradition of assimilation in American history, along with the outrage that often accompanies new arrivals. Nearly every ethnic group, from the Italians to the Chinese, has been the target of political and social hostility. It is an old story, but one worth telling, and it is an old debate, but one worth having. Border sovereignty, even to someone like me who probably favors more liberal immigration laws than most TAC readers, is a legitimate issue and not to be easily dismissed.

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/corporate-capitalists-killed-american-identity/

But if things are as bad as all this then why is Trump trumpeting(no pun intended) his support for the Middle Class and all Americans?

President Trump’s iron clad campaign promise that auto layoffs would cease has evaporated into hot air. At his rustbelt rallies Trump insisted that if he won the election the auto industry would so fear him that they would not only end layoffs of American workers, but bring back the factories they had built overseas.

Late last month, General Motors announced it would slash its salaried workers by 15 percent and terminate one in four of its executives. The “reset” will be felt well beyond the company’s Oshawa plant in Ontario, Lordstown, Ohio, Detroit and Warren, Michigan and White Marsh, Maryland GM targeted for layoffs.

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/12/trumps-concern-working-class-just-convenient-campaign-slogan/

If you have money then you are smiling….if you have no savings then you are worried about the coming year……pretty much America as usual.

By The Way….remember those tax cuts that were gonna makes us all wealthier?

Most Americans expect to pay less in federal taxes this year, after President Trump and Republicans in Congress passed a last-minute tax bill last December.

But thanks to a rule change that the Internal Revenue Service made Thursday, a lot of Americans will reportedly be paying a bit more in taxes in 2019 than they thought they would–and even more in later years. Eventually, maybe a lot more.

It all comes down to a simple math equation, as first reported by The Wall Street Journal–or more accurately a series of simple math equations. Because the tax law uses particular dollar amounts to establish thresholds for different things–tax brackets, the amounts of deductions, etc.–the IRS has to adjust many of these numbers for inflation each year.

Who Benefited From 9/11

Oh boy yet another conspiracy theory….like there is not enough of them these days…..sorry more specific……on the attacks of 9/11…..

I could spend my day looking up these conspiracies but I found a simpler way of educating…..

After 17 years of events have gone by……have these theories been replaced with something different?

Uh huh!

But not replaced….just expanded…..

The MSM has done more to move some of these theories forward….more so than persons unknown……

 Once an anti-Semitic rumor moved from fringe to the mainstream, it took less than two weeks for violence to erupt. The false allegation that liberal philanthropist George Soros was funding or supporting a caravan of Honduran refugees heading to the U.S. spread wildly from a single tweet posted on Oct. 14.

Along with far-right memes, that allegation helped motivate both an alleged mail-bomber and a mass shooter at a Pittsburgh synagogue. The way these messages traveled across the internet in this short time span is just one example of how extremist messages and memes circulate with incredible speed across mainstream social media platforms.

https://theantimedia.com/mainstream-conspiracy-theories/

Now that bitch of mine is out of the way we can now return to the attacks on 9/11……

A single common theme emerges from most public discussions of U.S. foreign policy. No matter how widespread the carnage, devastating the financial impact or enormous the opportunity cost of war – the United States is always presumed to have meant well. US foreign policies are designed as much to improve the well-being of foreigners as to protect US national security. It is relatively rare for revisionist historians or informed critics questioning the true motives behind US foreign policy to be allowed any significant platform to air contrarian views. Despite this pervasive discrimination, a significant segment of the American public not only believes US elites exploited the 9/11 attacks, but would like to see US government officials who backed the “Global War on Terror” criminally prosecuted.

Credible “Global War on Terror” damage assessments are as scarce as policy contrarians. Since 9/11, US government officials debated but generally shied away from releasing official body counts. This is to avoid public perceptions that the US is now trapped in a “quagmire” reminiscent of Vietnam. Credible, official total financial cost estimates of the series of conflicts – officially premised on the idea that they will protect the US from future 9/11-style attacks – are similarly difficult to come by. When there are no solid numbers, it becomes impossible to have meaningful debates or perform public opinion research – which may be why the information deficits persist.

https://original.antiwar.com/smith-grant/2018/12/03/34-of-americans-believe-us-elites-exploited-9-11-for-gain/

Any theories you would like to share?

Syria Is Still A War

Even though Syria is not front page news any longer….the war continues…and even though there has been ramblings that the US would leave the region (all BS)….the truth is the US has set itself up for another long war…..

President Trump came into office harshly critical of endless wars in the Middle East, but seems to be staring down the barrel of another such conflict in Syria. This reflects the Pentagon’s determination to stay in the country, and the administration’s ambitious goals not being really attainable.

The US wants an “enduring defeat of ISIS,” as ever, but has also tacked onto that a full withdrawal of all Iran-backed forces from the “entirety of Syria,” along with an irreversible political process that officials have maintained can’t involve Assad or other top Syrian officials.

So in addition to wanting ISIS defeated, the US wants to ensure they never come back. Meanwhile, they want not only Iran ousted, but all Shi’ite militias in Syria. On top of that, they also want regime change, even though the rebels are all but wiped out.

US officials are comfortably comparing this to decades of war in northern Iraq, which saw the US propping up an autonomous Kurdish region only to watch it get hammered in the past year by the Iraqi military.

This may end up being a model for Syria as well, where the US is supporting the Kurdish YPG in expanding its control over much of eastern Syria, while insisting that the US opposes the idea of a heavily autonomous Kurdish region in favor of a strong centralized government.

(antiwar.com)

America does not want any peace in this region…..why would I make that statement?

Well the US is calling on Russia to abandon peace talks……

With the US seemingly gearing up for an open-ended military involvement in Syria, US envoy James Jeffrey looks to be trying to undercut any peace efforts, demanding that the world “pull the plug” on the Russia-led Astana talks.

The Astana talks involve Russia, Turkey, and Iran, and Jeffrey says the US opposes the “rather strange initiative” and wants it scrapped in favor of a new UN effort, presumably one which the US would be given a priority position in.

The US never supported the Astana process in the first place, and has demanded that the end of the Syrian War involve unconditional regime change. Russia has said they want the end state to be settled with a free election, which would include the possibility of existing officials running for office. The US says that can never be allowed.

There is no sign a new UN effort is happening anyhow to replace Astana, but that may also be part of the idea. With the rebellion all but defeated, the US seems determined to keep the war going, and scrap anything that might result in negotiations.

(antiwar.com)

What reason would there be to want and end to peace talks?

Do I seriously need to answer that question?