Drain The Swamp! Drain The Swamp!

Closing Thought–22Oct19

The chant rang out and the peasants danced.

One of Donald Trump’s promises in the 2016 campaign and yet another promise broken…..

Last year when Trump was asked about that damn swamp….he sai

 

President Trump on Thursday asserted that his administration is following through on his pledge to “drain the swamp.”

“From the day I took the oath of office, I’ve been fighting to drain the swamp, and sometimes it may not look like it, but believe me, we are draining the swamp,” Trump said during remarks at the White House about tax reform. 

“And there are a lot of unhappy people,” he continued. “You can see that every day. All you have to do is turn on the news. Every time you see me hit, you know that I’m draining the swamp. And people don’t like it.”

Trump repeatedly vowed during the 2016 campaign and since taking office that he would “drain the swamp” and rid Washington, D.C., of lifelong political insiders and ethical quandaries.

(thehill.com)

Now after a couple of years the count has made the news…..

Trump’s first term, the liberal group American Bridge 21st Century has supplied the Washington Post with a list of lobbyists on Team Trump, and it’s formidable:

Data provided to The Post … identifies over 350 individuals who’ve worked as lobbyists who currently work in the administration, have worked in it or have been nominated to serve in Trump’s administration. Cumulatively, they’ve represented more than 2,800 companies at one point or another, according to lobbying registration documents. Nearly 200 of them now served or have been nominated to serve in divisions of government that they once lobbied.

Most of these people are not as famous (or infamous) as, say, the former oil industry shill and coal lobbyist who have serially run the Environmental Protection Agency under Trump. But 350 ex-lobbyists represent a lot of special interests. And their greatest concentration, the Post notes, is in the Executive Office of the President, where 47 ex-lobbyists toil to set policy for the entire federal government.

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/03/350-lobbyists-swimming-in-trumps-swamp.html

That was in 2018…and more recently another tally of the Swamp in thew Trump White House..

…his administration has hired a lobbyist for every 14 political appointments made, welcoming a total of 281 lobbyists on board, a ProPublica and Columbia Journalism Investigations analysis shows.

With a combination of weakened rules and loose enforcement easing the transition to government and back to K Street, Trump’s swamp is anything but drained. The number of lobbyists who have served in government jobs is four times more than the Obama administration had six years into office. And former lobbyists serving Trump are often involved in regulating the industries they worked for.

https://www.propublica.org/article/we-found-a-staggering-281-lobbyists-whove-worked-in-the-trump-administration

Did you understand the statement?  The Trump admin has hired one lobbysist for every 14 appointees ……think about that!

That drain promised is not even a trickle….another campaign promise to the American people broken.

How many promises need to be broken before his base realizes he is an outright LIAR?  That he is only looking out for himself….not the country.

I read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Making American (History) Great Again–Part 37

I have been writing and posting about American history….history that most Americans have never been taught or even thought about…..Maj. Sjursen takes on American history with the passion and the learning that Howard Zinn many years ago.

So far this series has taken the reader through all aspects of American history….from the very beginnings to today……but for those that have not been reading this series all along I will help you get caught up….please take some time and read the history that should be taught….

Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; Part 4; Part 5; Part 6; Part 7; Part 8; Part 9; Part 10; Part 11; Part 12; Part 13; Part 14; Part 15; Part 16; Part 17; Part 18; Part 19; Part 20; Part 21; Part 22; Part 23; Part 24; Part 25; Part 26; Part 27; Part 28; Part 29; Part 30; Part 31; Part 32; Part 33; Part 34; Part 35 ; Part 36.

We step into the recent history with the first elected black president….Barack Obama……all gthe drama that goes with that event……

Most serious historians, especially academics, believe that accounts of recent events—particularly within 10 years of the present—are more journalistic than historical. It is for good reason that journalism has been called the “first draft of history.” As the “American History for Truthdiggers” series nears an end, it looks at the administration of Barack Obama, who left the presidency less than 32 months ago. Because so little time has passed, the essay below is more a brief, analytical essay than a comprehensive reading based on established, long-scrutinized historical sources and discovery of new information. It should be viewed as this author’s first draft of rather recent history. —Danny Sjursen

Barack Hussein Obama. That a man with a black Kenyan father and a name derived from African and Islamic etymology was elected president of the United States seemed profound indeed. America’s legacy of chattel slavery and racial apartheid was such that only a decade and a half before the 2008 election Tupac Shakur would rap that Americans “ain’t ready to see a black president.” Nonetheless, Obama won—with authority—over his Republican opponent, Sen. John McCain of Arizona. By carrying traditionally Republican states such as Virginia, North Carolina and Indiana, Obama appeared to have forged a new Democratic coalition. Perhaps more important was the claim of some of his admirers that he inaugurated a new “post-racial” America. That would turn out to be only wishful thinking.

American History for Truthdiggers: The Obama Disappointment

I admit it I was expecting a lot more out of the Obama presidency….I was very disappointed in his foreign policies……plus I suspect that election of a black man as president is what gave the country a Donald Trump presidency.

We have now been taken into the present by Maj. Sjursen and his next article in the series should be very telling.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Mayor Pete Is Old Hat

Iowa polls are tightening up…..Warren, Biden and Mayor Pete….

I have been impressed with Mayor Pete from the beginning but as the season moves on I have come to realize that Mayor Pete is old hat……nothing about his candidacy smacks of anything new for the Dems…..he may be gay, he may be young, he may be articulate but he is as tired and old as the Clinton campaign.

It was the paradox that defined the fourth Democratic debate Tuesday night. Pete Buttigieg stood to benefit more than anybody from Joe Biden’s entirely forgettable performance, and yet with the possible exception of Biden himself, no one more vividly embodied all that is stale and sclerotic about the Democratic Party than the fresh-faced politician colloquially known as Mayor Pete.

Prior to the debate, Buttigieg threw punches to his left over health care, gun control and (perhaps most bizarrely) grassroots voters. And from the jump, he went right after Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), trotting out one Heritage Foundation-tested line after another on health care: that the overarching desire of the public in health care is to have choice, that higher taxes equal higher cost, and that Medicare for All would result in “kicking 150 million people off their health insurance.” It was a line of attack that earned the South Bend mayor and self-styled Heartlands whisperer rave reviews from the likes of the Republican National Committee.

Pete Buttigieg Is the Past

There is nothing new and fresh about the policies of Mayor Pete…..he just teaks the policies of the Clintonian era…policies that let corporations own the DNC and the nation.

However Mayor Pete is rising in the polls after his performance, make no mistake it was a performance, in the last Dem debate.

If you do not have a candidate then I suggest that you look elsewhere from Mayor Pete if you want the country to move forward from the corruption and the criminality of the Trump years.

Do you want the nation to move beyond the stagnation we have had politically? 

If so……

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

VOTE!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

The Great Antiwar President?

I recall when Trump was just a mere candidate he thumped his chest about all our wars across the planet….and in my conversations with my community I hear it even more now that he has done something in Syria.

I have asked the question……Is Trump truly an antiwar president?

Well some seem to think that he will soon end our involvement in Afghanistan…..the Pentagon is even making plans if Trump decides to leave the region….

NBC News is quoting Pentagon officials as saying that they are engaged in “prudent planning” for an abrupt withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan, if President Trump made a sudden decision to do so.

The officials are complaining about the quick moves in Syria, and say they are viewing it as a “dress rehearsal” for what could be a similar US pullout from Afghanistan. Defense Secretary Mark Esper insists no policy changes have been made in Afghanistan.

Though Pentagon officials often style themselves as constantly making plans to get out in front of decisions, this is never something practically seen when a quick policy decision is made, as the Pentagon brass seem to constantly drag their feet on any changes they don’t like.

(antiwar.com)

The optics say this could be a good thing….and then Trump toadies opens their mouth and all goes to crap and removes any hope for an end to wars…..

First the situation in Syria with Turkey….

In an interview on CNBC today, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that President Trump is “fully prepared” to engage in military force against Turkey if he believes it is necessary to do so.

Asked to elaborate on what might make it necessary, Pompeo said anything that was an American interest, or if the US believed there was a “fundamental norm” that they wanted to enforce could be a reason to use “all the powers that we have.”

Attacking Turkey is potentially problematic, both in that they are a fellow NATO member, and that the US is operating out of an air base in Turkey, a base where the US has an estimated 50 nuclear bombs.

This is more of a threat to Turkey than the US has offered previously. President Trump did threaten to totally destroy their entire economy, though this appeared to be an empty threat to destroy the economy through sheer force of will.

This is a specific war threat in northern Syria, and comes as President Trump concedes that the troops he’s announced were coming home won’t actually be returning to the US any time soon, rather staying in Iraq just in case.

(antiwar.com)

Then there is the constant saber rattling with Iran and instead of looking for a way out of the trap we are told that we may soon go to war ….AGAIN!

Threatens to hit Iran ‘like they’ve never been hit before’

Speaking to reporters at the White House on Monday, President Trump bragged about his efforts to try to get the US “out of wars,” then warned that “we may have to get in wars, too. OK?

Trump continued on talking about how ready the US is for a war with Iran, and how Iran will get hit “like they’ve never been hit before.” The implication is clear that Trump is nominally ending wars, but that America’s hawks will get fresh, new wars to replace them.

It’s likely also related to Trump’s interest in portraying himself as generally tough and the best at war. That, and his fondness for threatening Iran with unprecedented horrors seem destined to keep threatening an Iran War forever a possibility.

Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of all of this is, while Trump clearly elaborated in talking about Iran, he said “wars,” which suggests he may be envisioning multiple new military conflicts on the horizon.

(antiwar.com)

When Trump was a candidate I admit that I found his foreign policy almost tolerable but since his election he has proven to be nothing but a novice and incoherent.

He had a good chance….but now is is just as bad as the ones in Congress on foreign policy.

I read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Let’s Talk Ceasefire

Our Fearless Leader has authorized a ceasefire in Northern Syria…..a good idea to prevent deaths but this does little to help all sides with a rational approach to a conflict…..this deal benefits no one but Turkey….

I will wait here and give Trump supporters time to catch up…..

Let’s start with the solution we call a “ceasefire”…..

Several core elements emerge from a comparative analysis of ceasefires. These elements include provisions for (1) a cessation of hostilities, (2) the separation of forces, and (3) the verification, supervision, and monitoring of the agreement. The cessation of hostilities prevents the parties from engaging in hostile acts, which can include both military acts, such as firing on another party, and non-military acts, such as propaganda. The separation of forces is the process by which the parties will withdraw from contact and position themselves to prevent a return to conflict. Verification, supervision, and monitoring are measures to create accountability and ensure the proper implementation of the agreement.

Parties to a ceasefire may wish to incorporate additional provisions to tailor the agreement to their specific conflict. Further, some ceasefire agreements aim to establish a framework for the peace process, whereas others simply limit the content of the agreement to the provisions necessary to end immediate hostilities. Effective ceasefire agreements do the following: (1) establish tactical, geographical, and political obstacles that deter the parties from returning to conflict  (2) clearly indicate the rights and obligations of the parties, and minimize uncertainty through communication and information sharing  (3) create a sense of formal legal obligation and (4) engage the international community to significantly increase legitimacy and the costs of violating the agreement.

“It was a great day for the Kurds” …..Really?  How so?

This is NOT a traditional ceasefire or should I say a recognizable one…….

5 days?

STOP calling this a ceasefire…….it is not a ceasefire…… it is a momentary pause.

A “Safe Zone”?

Who will monitor this “Zone” to try and prevent any deadly policies from being implemented?

This is a “gimme” to Turkey….and a disaster for the Kurds.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”