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Posts Tagged ‘Trump’

Cartoon in Norwegian Paper

trump-in-norway

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person-of-the-year-2016

When I first heard about Trump being Time’s Person of the Year, my initial reactions where:

  1. That makes total sense: Of course he would be headlined this year.
  2. Dismay: Now we gave this man another title he can hold up to bolster his outsized ego, along with the keys to Air Force One and his name in the history books forever.
  3. Calm: I realized it’s not always an honor:
  • 1938: Adolf Hitler
  • 1939: Joseph Stalin
  • 1942: Joseph Stalin
  • 1957: Nikita Khrushchev
  • 1979: Ayatollah Khomeini
  • 2007: Vladimir Putin

Trump, supposedly, does not like the “Person of the Year” title, he wants it to be “Man of the Year” regardless of the fact that Time has called it Person since 1999. Sure enough, he denigrated the magazine in recent rallies for this.

Trump is the first president-elect I cannot stand behind. His small-minded attacks on individual citizens, from his position of president-elect, are abominable. It looks entirely un-presidential when he comes after a union leader by name, when he calls the members of the press at his rallies “dishonest” and when he ridicules a 19-year-old woman who has the courage to ask him challenging questions.

Trump’s “qualities” are 180 degrees opposite to my value system, just about in every area I can think of. There isn’t anything this man has done or said or written that I can reconcile with my value system and agree with.

I only see “hot air,” outright lies, deception, condescension, and self-serving vanity. I don’t believe he is in this for the country. This is all about his own ego.

I cannot make myself respect such a man. I cannot say that he is my president too.

I think the country made a terrible mistake electing him. He is turning our country into a plutocracy. He is dismantling 50 years of progress in many areas, including civil rights, and even science. His cabinet choices, for the most part, are abominable. I simply don’t believe that he and most of his minions know what they are doing, and when dilettantes get into power, they eventually make serious mistakes and things don’t end well.

Trump, Time Magazine’s Person of the Year 2016, is going to be our next president, and I am already waiting for the next few years to pass and the nightmare to be over.

Our country voted, it wanted it this way, and I respect that.

I blame Obama and Clinton for not recognizing how off the course they were until the night of November 8th. I didn’t recognize it either, I admit, but then, I wasn’t the president and I didn’t run to be president. Obama’s legacy, not matter what he accomplished, has a huge smudge mark, since he is leaving a country divided and handing the keys to a president unqualified.

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Got to love the New Yorker. This is priceless:

el-chapo

Trump Picks El Chapo to Run D.E.A.

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…is like

  • putting the fox into the henhouse (trite but trusted)
  • putting an arsonist in charge at the fire station (Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club)
  • disputing the existence of gravity (Rush Holt, chief executive of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS))
  • saying the moon is made out of green cottage cheese (my own)

Mr. Trump and Mr. Pruitt, your viewpoints are opposed by 97% of the world’s scientist and a majority of the American public.

Human activities are largely responsible for climate change and severe impacts are already underway. The sooner we act, the lower the cost and risk will be.

You’ll go down in history as the administration that wrecked the planet – and the country.

Make America Great Again?

Seriously?

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Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without consequences.

— Donald Trump, December 1, 2016

 

Trump China 1

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America’s New Plutocracy

Now that the Trumpashians are getting ready to move into the White House, things are truly going to change in Washington. The Cabinet is stacked with billionaires. Some of the people are truly frightening placements in their positions. It’s like putting a wrecking ball to our institutions. But then, yes, the Trumpoon himself has promised he’d shake up Washington, and that’s what 62,625,928 Americans voted for.

I have nothing against billionaires in principle. I have even met one once. They are really good at making huge amounts of money for themselves. I just don’t understand how that translates to making America great again. Billionaires probably have the least experience with what it’s like to be in the middle class.

And then there are the Trumpashian kids. Just because the Trumpoon got elected does not mean that every one of his kids is all of a sudden an expert in foreign policy, financial policy and military strategy. But they’re acting like it. Putting your kids into positions of power is something leaders of banana republics do. Saddam Hussein’s two sons were feared in Iraq. And then there is the dynasty of the Kims in North Korea.

The whole Trumpashian brood in the White House does not give me comfortable feelings.

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trumptweat2

Trump has an incredibly thin skin. Looks like he is threatened by a recount effort underway in Wisconsin.

It appears he actually convinced himself that millions of people voted illegally, and all of those who voted illegally were Clinton voters. Can you spell CONSPIRACY THEORY ? Seriously, does the President-elect not have anything better to do than to create and spread conspiracy theories in a nation that is in desperate need of reconciliation, reunification and reassurance from its future leader?

What is this man thinking?

Who advises this man?

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Our President, the Buffoon – Take 1

trumptweat1

Inappropriate.

Un-presidential.

Embarrassing.

Undiplomatic.

Insulting.

Trumpian.

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Below a must-read article by Bill Gross, the King of Bonds. The key words:

His tenure will be a short four years but is likely to be a damaging one for jobless and low-wage American voters.

Populism Takes a Wrong Turn – by Bill Gross

The Trumpian Fox has entered the Populist Henhouse, not so much by stealth but as a result of Middle America’s misinterpretation of what will make America great again. Not having voted for either establishment party’s candidate, I write in amazed, almost amused bewilderment at what American voters have done to themselves. An Election Day Survey (Reuters/Ipsos) of 10,000 voters revealed the extraordinary fury of the American populist movement. Almost 72% agreed that “the American economy is rigged to the advantage of the rich and powerful”. Count me among them, yet in voting to deny Hillary Clinton the Henhouse, they “unwittingly” (lack of wit), let Donald Trump sneak in the side door. His tenure will be a short four years but is likely to be a damaging one for jobless and low-wage American voters. They were the force for Trump’s flipping the Midwest into a Republican Electoral College victory. But while the Fox promised jobs and to make America great again, his policies of greater defense and infrastructure spending combined with lower corporate taxes to invigorate the private sector continue to favor capital versus labor, markets versus wages, and is a continuation of the status quo.

For example, Republican pleas for tax reform are centered around the argument that America has one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world at 35%. Not so. Of the S&P 500’s largest 50 corporations, the average tax rate (including state, local and foreign regulations) is 24%. U.S. corporations rank among the world’s most lightly, as opposed to heavily, taxed. Trump policies also appear to favor the repatriation of trillions of dollars of foreign profits at extremely low cost under the logic that the money will be spent for investment here in the U.S. Doubtful. The last time such a “pardon” was put into law in 2004, no noticeable pickup in investment took place. Of the $362 billion that earned a “tax holiday”, most went to dividends, corporate bonuses, and stock buybacks. Apple or any other large U.S. corporation can borrow the money they need here in the U.S. at historically low interest rates to fund investment. A few have, but over $500 billion annually in recent years has gone to the repurchase of corporate stock and the increase of earnings per share, instead of earnings and GDP growth. Why would they need to repatriate anything for investment in the real economy?

Could a Clinton Administration have done much better? Probably not. Both the Clinton Democrats and almost all Republicans represent the corporate status quo that favors markets versus wages; Wall Street versus Main Street. That’s why the American public and indeed global citizens will continually take a wrong turn in their efforts to neuter the establishment and to regain several decades’ lost momentum in real wages versus real profits. Neither party as they now stand has bold policies beyond the reach of K Street Lobbyists. To my mind, there are better solutions than either party’s election platform, such as a Keynesian/FDR job corps or a Kennedyesque AmeriCorps that puts people to work helping other people. Such programs were never emphasized by either candidate. Let’s supplement welfare with a patriotic “Help America” jobs program, even if government organized. Would it be as efficient as a corporate-led effort? Of course not, but corporations are fighting structural headwinds, such as demographic aging, technological displacement of jobs (robotization), deglobalization, and overleveraged balance sheets. They focus on the bottom line as opposed to the public welfare. Government must step in, not by reducing taxes, which will only increase profits at the expense of labor, but by being the employer of last resort in hopefully a productive way.

Populism is on the march and a Trump victory will do little to halt its advance in future decades. If anything, it is demographically baked in the cake. Investors, as The Economist astutely pointed out, face a possible no-win situation. Unless the worker’s share of GDP reverses its downward trend, and capital’s share peaks, then populists worldwide will reject establishment parties in almost every future election – initiating in some cases growth-negative policies revolving around trade, immigration, and yes, in Trump’s case, lower taxation that may lower GDP growth, not raise it. Global populism is the wave of the future, but it has taken a wrong turn in America. Investors must drive with caution, understanding that higher deficits resulting from lower taxes raise interest rates and inflation, which in turn have the potential to produce lower earnings and P/E ratios. There is no new Trump bull market in the offing. Be satisfied with 3-5% globally diversified returns. The Wall Street, finance-led hegemon is fading. The Populist sunrise has barely broken the horizon.

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Here is a link to the entire transcript of the Trump interview with the New York Times.

Several thoughts come to mind:

  • Our new president is a rambler
  • Our new president can’t talk about his office without talking about his hotels and golf courses
  • He compared Breitbart to the New York Times

Read for yourself. I am stunned about how unprepared this man is just for an interview.

How prepared is he to be president?

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You know the hottest day ever was in 1890-something, 98. You know, you can make lots of cases for different views. I have a totally open mind.

My uncle was for 35 years a professor at M.I.T. He was a great engineer, scientist. He was a great guy. And he was … a long time ago, he had feelings — this was a long time ago — he had feelings on this subject. It’s a very complex subject. I’m not sure anybody is ever going to really know. I know we have, they say they have science on one side but then they also have those horrible emails that were sent between the scientists. Where was that, in Geneva or wherever five years ago? Terrible. Where they got caught, you know, so you see that and you say, what’s this all about. I absolutely have an open mind. I will tell you this: Clean air is vitally important. Clean water, crystal clean water is vitally important. Safety is vitally important.

And you know, you mentioned a lot of the courses. I have some great, great, very successful golf courses. I’ve received so many environmental awards for the way I’ve done, you know. I’ve done a tremendous amount of work where I’ve received tremendous numbers. Sometimes I’ll say I’m actually an environmentalist and people will smile in some cases and other people that know me understand that’s true. Open mind.

— Donald Trump – New York Times interview, Nov 23, 2016

Well, I am relieved that Trump’s uncle had feelings on the subject 35 years ago. It must be all good then.

I am also relieved that Trump received environmental awards for his golf courses. He understands climate science. It must be all good then.

Clean air and clean water are vitally important.

And he has an open mind.

I think I can now stop worrying about climate change. We have a good captain at the help.

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Trump nominated Betsy DeVos, the wife of Amway heir Dick DeVos, for Secretary of Education. She has a bachelor’s degree in business administration and political science. She has never taught in school, did not attend any public school or college, and has strong family ties to Christian causes and possibly creationism. Her brother is Erik Prince, the founder of the mercenary company Blackwater, which is now defunct.

Along with Trump, we now have two members of the billionaire class representing us in our government. Do the people of this country really believe that billionaires, just because they are rich, will do what is best the for the middle class? I’d like to ask Bernie Sanders what he thinks about that.

I don’t believe that someone who has never taught a child in school, who has never attended a public school, should now suddenly be qualified to make decisions that affect a hundred million young people in our country.

With Trump, we’re now building an entirely new class of government. In the past, billionaires got to pull the strings by buying politicians. Now the billionaires are infiltrating our government directly. They are running it now.

It’s called “plutocracy.”

And we all sit by and think this is a good thing?

 

 

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third-party-votes

I heard many people say this. Trump was unthinkable. Clinton was corrupt. They had to vote third party. In the aftermath, and detailed counting, it turns out that the third party voters could have prevented Trump.

It’s not the fault of the voters. It’s the fault of Clinton for not being able to convey her message and mission more clearly and powerfully. Every one of these votes would have gone to Sanders.

And there is my history lesson for the day.

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climate-science-consensus

Source: Skeptical Science

The worldwide consensus that the current global warming is anthropogenic approaches 100% as the expertise in climate science rises.

In English: The more a person knows about climate science, the more they believe it’s man-made.

Trump’s assignee to transition the EPA to the new administration is Myron Ebell, a climate change denier. Ebell has no scientific experience at all. He graduated from Colorado College with a B.A. in philosophy and obtained an M.Sc. in political theory from the London School of Economics. This makes him a politician by education, and that’s what he has done all his life.

I put a dot for him on this chart. He has no professional experience with climate science.  Not surprisingly, and consistent with the graph, knowing nothing about climate science, he ends up on the bottom as a denier. There is nothing wrong with that. Most people don’t.

However, this is the “best and brightest” President-elect Trump came up with to head the transition of the EPA, a highly science-heavy organization. That’s like making the clerk in the butcher shop in your local supermarket the Surgeon General. After all, he knows what a T-bone steak is. Meat.

I wonder what kind of respect Ebell will garner from the staff in the EPA?

This appointment does not make Trump look like he is serious. During the campaign, he signaled that actual expertise does not really matter, as long as you have good advisers. But if the advisers themselves do not have any expertise, things will not end well.

The emperor has no clothes.

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Panic is spreading around the world about the U.S. electing a fascist. And Trump, by not assuaging the world, signals his tacit agreement. He installs Bannon, a fascist, as his closest advisor. Trump does not care what others think. That may work in business. It does not work in government. We have 4,000 years of written history as evidence. Will we never learn?

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