The Nightmare Continues

Trump had his chance for a reset and missed it. Remember that Trump campaigned as a populist, not as a traditional Republican. He could have used the overwhelming rejection (17% public approval) of his flawed, Trump-Ryancare bill as an opportunity to move toward the center. He could have expressed an openness for a bill that would benefit those working class supporters who got him elected, not just the fat cats. He could have reached out to the Democrats, offering to work with them to fix Obamacare so that it works better.

Not gonna happen.

We heard today that he is not giving up after all on a “repeal and replace” law. Members of the Freedom Caucus have said the same thing. Here we go again.

But that is not all that he has done this week that should trouble people—including moderate and open-minded Republicans. Yesterday he proudly signed the order to “repeal and replace” the Obama initiatives on climate change and carbon emissions. According to most environmentalists and others who are following the global warming story, this is potentially catastrophic. It could sack the Paris Accord and is handing the global leadership role on climate issues over to China. Regardless of whatever else Trump does in his presidency, this move alone will earn him a place in the annals of the worst scoundrels in history. According to a CNN report I heard yesterday, ExxonMobil even placed a full page ad in either the NY Times or the Wall Street Journal supporting a go-slow approach on tearing up the Obama climate initiatives. Will the American public put up with this? What can we do?

The other item, of course, is the drip, drip, drip of the Russian inquiry including the secret meeting in the White House between the head of the House Intelligence Committee and either Trump or one of his acolytes. The House investigation is now on hold, and Nunes refuses to recuse himself or step down. Then there is the meeting between Kushner and the head of a Russian bank with ties to Putin. And, of course, Trump’s continued insistence that it is really Obama who has broken the law with his illegal wire taps. If there is nothing to the accusations that people in the Trump campaign colluded with Russia, then why is Trump behaving like he is guilty? What do they have to hide?

So the nightmare called Donald Trump continues. Alas, this is likely to keep going  until he either wears out, is impeached, or just calls it quits. I do not see any light at the end of the tunnel regarding this deeply flawed human being and the harm he is doing to our country. The American people spoke out on the health care bill and that made a difference. Now we must speak out on climate change. God knows what it will be tomorrow. Stay tuned….



And Now the Health Care Fiasco

Did anyone actually believe the Republicans were going to come up with a bill which preserved all the things people like about Obamacare (no preexisting condition clauses, no coverage caps, adult children remaining on their parent’s policies, vastly expanded coverage, etc.) without some kind of mandate and ongoing government subsidies to reduce the costs to those without a lot of money? Their actual bill turned out to be worse than most imagined—reducing the number of people without insurance by 24 million and weakening Medicaid while at the same time providing a windfall of billions of dollars to the one-percenters. What were they thinking? Paul Ryan is supposed to be the golden boy of the conservative policy wonks. This is the best he could do? The Republicans voted to repeal Obamacare sixty times over seven years. It is not like they did not have time to think about a workable alternative. And this is what they came up with?

Fool me once, shame on you! Fool me twice, shame on me! We Americans may not have our act together, but we aren’t that stupid. The number of people responding on polls who said they approved of the Ryan bill was about 17%. The Republicans are damn lucky that it did not pass.

So what is going on? Here is my take as to why the effort to repeal and replace was a total and complete fiasco for the Republicans (and the first good news the Democrats have had since the election) and what it bodes for the future:

  1. The Freedom Caucus is the albatross around the neck of Ryan and also Trump. There are only a little over 30 of them but enough—if they all vote as a block—to keep a bill from becoming law if they do not go along with it and if no Democrats vote for it. Ryan needed 21 votes from the Freedom Caucus. He did not have them though in this case a number of “moderates” also balked as well. This is significant because  any bill that does not get any Freedom Caucus votes will need some Democratic support to pass. The problem is exacerbated by the fact that the only things the Freedom Caucus tends to support are so far to the right that Republican “moderates” in contested districts get cold feet. As long as this dynamic is in play, the only bills that will become law will need to be bi partisan, something that has been generally missing for eight years on the Hill. This becomes even more important in the Senate when more than two Republican defections will kill a bill and the filibuster option is also available.
  2. Trump is a phony and a lightweight. This will come as no surprise to Democrats; and if the Republicans are not figuring this out yet, shame on them. By all accounts he had not read the bill or know what was in it, and did not get involved until the last minute. Arrogantly, he assumed that when the “art of the deal” genius he claims himself to be stepped in, he would get his way. When he did finally endorse the Ryan bill, he supported a bill that if it became law would have harmed a large number of his working class supporters who are benefitting from Obamacare. Nothing that Trump has done so far has benefitted them in any way; and the way things are going, it is doubtful that anything he does will. His populist message was a complete sham, a bait and switch. Just look as his cabinet—mostly billionaires like himself—and the main reason behind Ryancare was really the tax rebates for the fat cats.
  3. They may not realize it, but this is a big time decision moment for the Republicans and for Trump—and will determine whether they are able accomplish much of anything in the years ahead or if we remain hopelessly locked in a bitter stalemate. Trump’s in-your-face arrogance and his desire to shake up the Republic by doing everything his way—or perhaps more accurately, Bannon’s way– without bipartisan cooperation will not work. Because of the Freedom Caucus he must get some Democrats to vote with him. This should be a wake up call. Instead of encouraging the “explosion” of Obamacare, Trump and the Republican “moderates” should try to work with the Democrats to try to fix it. Instead of taking extremist, right wing positions to stir up his base, he should move to the middle and find common ground with Democrats on issues like immigration, climate change and tax reform. Naïve wishful thinking? Maybe, but on the bright side, you could say that if Trump uses the Ryancare fiasco as a learning moment, this could make a world of difference.
  4. Sadly the prospects for that happening do not look good. Trump’s tendency we all know is to double down. Just yesterday he said again that evidence would show the Obama wire tapped his phone. He just does not seem to get it. He can’t help himself. While I hope of for an epiphany moment, I do not expect it to happen.

My prediction is that Trump will be a short timer. He will not last that long. It could be the Russian Connection. It could be his inability to get anything passed, forcing him to take his marbles and go home. If that happens the challenge to work on a bi partisan basis will fall into Pence’s lap and will be just as dire. Pence is a hard core ideologue, who seems to have drunk the far right, Republican cool aid; but unlike his boss, he seems to have both a heart and a brain. Perhaps there is a kernel of hope.

With or without Trump, the time is now. We need leaders of both parties to step up, find at least some common ground in the middle and work to address the life-and-death issues like climate change, terrorism, and a fair and equitable society that if not addressed will bring us all down.

So while the debacle of Ryancare may bring brief relief—even delight—to us Democrats, the “victory” will be short lived. There is work to be done to address the major issues that affect us all. If this does not result in a re-set and a move toward bipartisanship, we are all in trouble.




Trump Score Card: 63 Days and Counting

From my political science class in college I recall that newly elected presidents typically enjoy a honeymoon period of up to one year. Most people tend to give the new president the benefit of a doubt; and even if he (or could have and should have been a she) was not their choice, they hope that he will be successful. The first 100 days are especially important because that is when the tone is set and the foundation is laid for getting things done.

So what kind of start has Mr. Trump had?

As outlined below, it has been a rocky start, by many accounts the worst in the history of our republic:

  1. The Cabinet. Trump’s first move was assembling a cabinet. A couple appear to be solid and competent—Tillerson as Secretary of State, and Mattis as Secretary of Defense. Others like McMaster as National Security Adviser, Kelly in Homeland Security, Chao in Transportation, and Pompeo generally get pretty good marks, but the rest are controversial at best, dismal at worst. There are reports of infighting, conflict, over-sized egos, and lack of direction; and Trump according to some reports has designated “spies” to keep an eye on each cabinet member to report back as to loyalty to Trump. Most troubling is Steve Bannon, the alt-right extremist who is Trump’s chief adviser, who is advocating “deconstruction” of the government. What is not clear is how the cabinet members will work together and whom Trump will listen to. Grade: D.
  2. Immigration. His second move was immigration. His two orders to ban immigrants from six predominantly Muslim countries have been blocked each time by judges and are currently in limbo. Bad idea in the first place and poorly executed. He has loosened the restrictions as to who can be deported by ICE, and more aggressive deportations seem to be getting underway. The undocumented residents we know are terrified. Attendance in public schools in majority immigrant communities is way down as are 911 police calls in those communities . We could be on the cusp of a reign of terror. In my view as scary as his agenda is shaping up to be, this is the most inhumane and cruel because families get ripped apart, dreams are crushed, and loyal, law abiding people are uprooted. If his budget passes with billions allocated for more ICE police and massive prisons for deportees, it will get much, much worse. Grade F.
  3. Repeal and Replace. The first legislative move was to repeal and replace Obamacare. Trump has lent his full support to the Ryan bill, which has turned out to be extremely controversial even among Republicans. The bill will be voted on by the House tomorrow where it is not a shoe in. The CBO shows 26,000,000 fewer people receiving health insurance if it passes, many of them Trump supporters, most of them with modest incomes. If it becomes law, it will also have a profound impact on doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, and insurers, most of whom oppose it. The problem that Trump faces is that the 30-plus members of the Freedom Caucus support repeal but adamantly oppose any “replacement,” and the more moderate members fear a backlash if thousands of people in their districts lose their insurance. Even if it passes in the House, it has an even tougher chance in the Senate where all it takes are three Republicans to get cold feet. Bottom line: it is very uncertain how or even if the Republicans will “repeal and replace” Obamacare . And that is actually good news. Grade: F for Trump.
  4. The budget came out next. This could be called the gotcha budget. All the stuff that Trump said he was going to do to help working people? In the trash can. Besides the health care bait and switch, there is nothing in the budget for poor people or the working class and lots of tax cuts for the rich. Huge cuts to affordable housing, transportation, the environment, food stamps, school lunches, health research, homeless shelters—you name it. Nothing is spared. And for the multi trillion dollar infrastructure initiative? There are big cuts for Amtrak and Metro and no mention of any new initiatives. This budget is so merciless and anti poor that even some Republicans are saying that it has gone too far. Who wrote this thing? Did Trump read any of? Trump, the populist, the guy to sock it to Wall Street and help the little guy? Fortunately this budget stands zero chance of passing. Where it ends up and how much of the slash and burn agenda can be modified is anyone’s guess. Something will ultimately pass that will move back toward the center, but it will still mean hard times for working people. Grade F.
  5. The Russia Connection. Comey confirmed whatever everyone already knew: the FBI is investigating Russia and also connections between Russia and the Trump campaign. With all the ongoing contacts and known connections with Russia by people like Paul Manafort, Roger Stone and Michael Flynn, how likely is it that there was no mention EVER of the presidential campaign? Who knows if the FBI will ever be able to nail Trump, but I have got to think that the chances are pretty high that the likes of Manafort, Stone and Flynn and perhaps others are going to be implicated. Is this something really big like  Watergate or just another slimy distraction? Time will tell. Grade F.
  6. The Tweets. He can’t stop. It is some kind of illness and will continue and perhaps ultimately bring him down. The outrageous lies about the Obama wire tap—which he still stands by—why does he say these things? It just keeps on coming—the Muslims dancing in NJ when the World Trade Center came down, the massive voter fraud in California, the record crowds at his inauguration, the Obama birth scam. The entire world—except perhaps for a hard core group of his most ardent supporters—knows that Trump is an incorrigible liar. How do you know what to believe? How can an incorrigible liar be effective in anything –let alone the President of the United States? “Sad.” Grade F.
  7. The Conflicts of Interest. Still no tax returns. Still seemingly more interested in what Donnie Jr and Eric are doing than in the business of the country. Still spends more time in Mar-a-Lago than the White House at the tax payers expense. Grade F.
  8. The Push Back. Trump would probably deny it as fake news, but the Resistance is growing. There are demonstrations every day somewhere about something. The Women’s March broke all records. The million post card protest has gotten minimal publicity but surely someone in the White House noticed. The fake press like the NY Times and Washington Post continue to pound away. The late night comedy shows have never been more popular. The pushback is just getting started. If continued—and indeed it must—it can’t help but have an impact. Grade A. Not for Trump, for the Resistance.

Let’s simply say that it has not been a great start. Trump has squandered over half his allotted 100 days and accomplished nothing positive. The White House would appear to be in disarray. Where he is headed is still not totally clear. He could not be having any fun. Where all this leads and what it means to us and to our planet, that is to be determined.

Stay tuned.


Faux News Special: “White House Wire Tap Reveals War Plans”

Based on an illegal wire tap of the White House microwave byFaux News, conversations this week indicate U.S. war plans. The following is verbatim:

Spicer: Mr. President. Bad news—your approval numbers are sinking, Obamacare repeal/replace is stuck in Congress because of feuds between the Freedom Caucus and the Republicans-In-Name-Only, ditto with your budget, and the Russia connection inquiry is still going on. The evil judges have nixed your Muslim ban again. Worst of all the only ones buying the Obama wire tap story are the Republican die-hards. We are in trouble.

Trump: So what do I do?

Spicer: Start a war. Isn’t that what all presidents do when they get in trouble? Johnson did it in Vietnam, Reagan in Granada, and Bush in Iraq. It never fails to change the conversation .

Trump: So who do I bomb?

Spicer: Let’s go down the list. What about Mexico? Looks like they are resisting coming up with $50 billion for the wall.

Trump: Got too many hotels down there. Bad for business.

Spicer: Kenya? That is where Obama was born.

Trump: Same problem. Hotel. Let’s hit Hawaii. That is where he grew up. Plus the damn judge stopped my Muslim ban. Will serve the S.O.B. right.

Spicer: Not a country. It’s a state. How about Cuba? That will score some points against Obama for opening up the country in the first place.

Trump: Two new hotels in the works.

Spicer: North Korea might work. The guy is a total nut case and they actually have weapons of mass destruction.

Trump: You sure?

Spicer: Everybody knows they have nukes. Saw on Fox news that he had his half brother killed with a chemical weapon, and he set off a bunch of rockets just this week. In less than two years, they could have rockets that could carry nuclear warheads all the way to California. We have to hit them now before it is too late.

Trump: California? In less than two years?

Spicer: Yes, California. Less than two years.

Trump: Let’s wait a couple years.

Spicer: No. We have to change the conversation now, and the only way to do it is hit some hostile country. You couldn’t find a better candidate—nut case dictator, no friends except maybe China and not a single Trump Hotel.

Trump: Great idea, Sean! Call Rex. Tell him to get his ass over there right now.



Faux news special: Breaking News–White House to Relocate to Mar-a-Lago


In a hastily called news briefing to reporters today, White House Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, announced that on Saint Patrick’s Day, the White House will officially relocate to the Mar-a-Lago Club, the Trump-owned, private resort in Palm Beach. He said that since being inaugurated, President Trump has spent only five percent of his time in what has been called the White House and the rest of the time at Mar-a-Lago, and operating two residences for the president is a waste of tax payers’ money. The building on 1600 Pennsylvania Ave will be vacated, locked, painted green so as to avoid any confusion, then converted into a luxury Trump bed and breakfast.

“He is doing this for the American people,” added Spicer. “It is his way of making America great again.”

Trump is also requiring all of his cabinet members to relocate to Palm Beach as well, and his two sons who now run his new development company, “Trump White House Inc.” have just constructed a compound which will provide luxury housing for them. Each cabinet member will be assigned his or her private mansion, which will be large enough to accommodate all the top level staff they need to keep their departments running. All other non essential, government personnel will be terminated. “This is yet again another example of what our president is doing to make America great. “ said Spicer. “Plus it will reduce the cost of government by billions dollars a year and eliminate all deficits, even with the provision that it will be illegal for anyone with net worth of over one billion dollars to pay any taxes whatsoever.”

Rex Tillerson was the first cabinet member to determine how many people were required to manage the State Department –a total of 14 employees. Doctor Ben Carson was next regarding HUD, zero. Other departments are expected to fall between those two numbers.

The initial reaction on Capitol Hill has been mixed. The Republicans are euphoric and the Democrats outraged. Since this is a special executive order, it will go into effect immediately, leaving millions of Americans unemployed after March 17. “No one will know the difference,” said Spicer, “since these low life, incompetents don’t do anything anyway. By definition they are not essential, and if they are not essential, why pay them? If they want to actually work, they can go into the military.”

When asked by one reporter if the next order would be to relocate the U.S. Capital to Palm Beach, he replied that it was “under consideration” and dependent on Trump White house Inc. being able to furnish housing for all members of the U.S. Congress and their staffs.

When asked by another reporter if anyone had been able to produce any evidence that Obama personally tapped Trump’s phone, he corrected the reporter and had him forcefully removed for disrespect. “It was not the phone anyway,” he said, “it was the microwave and we have incontrovertible evidence. But it is too complicated to go into.”

The press conference adjourned with no further questions.



Bait and Switch

The big story behind Trump’s electoral victory in the election of 2016 in addition to Russian meddling and FBI bungling was the unexpected support from the disgruntled, white working class. They saw him as the only true anti establishment candidate and their best hope for turning Washington upside down. Current polls indicate huge Republican support for Trump, and there is no indication of loss of support from those blue-collar workers who voted for him enthusiastically.


So let’s take a look at what Trump has in store for them. First health care. While the CBO has not completed its evaluation of impact of repealing and replacing the ACA, some think tanks have, and it looks like between 10 and 15 million people will lose the insurance they had under Obamacare or find the replacement unaffordable. A large percentage of these people are white working class, many of whom probably voted for Trump. The big winners of Trump/Ryancare, if it passes, will be the billionaires who will no longer have to pay the extra taxes that funded Obamacare. So much for healthcare.

What about jobs? The job market is continuing to do well though the gains in the first quarter of 2017 are probably due more to Obama than to Trump according to many economists. No matter. Who is to complain about job growth? But the nagging, national problem is income disparity.

Trump and the Republicans remain openly hostile to the idea of raising the national minimum wage or requiring more pay for low income, salaried workers who work overtime. They are fiercely anti Labor. Trump is also against free trade—as are many of his working class supporters—and is toying with the idea of import taxes. Most economists see trade restrictions and trade wars as job killers. Trump’s jawboning big companies to keep some Midwestern factories open makes a good sound bite but is not expected to produce or retain a huge number of good paying jobs. To pay for the Big Wall and military increases Trump is dismantling as much of the social safety net as he can get his hands on including job retraining and support for displaced workers.

Finally, there is the promised trillion dollar infrastructure initiative. That would produce jobs, but when was the last time you heard a word about infrastructure?

The Republican Congress is adamantly opposed to spending on infrastructure, so for any major initiative to pass Trump will need Democrats. These are the same people whose beloved president has been falsely accused by Trump of illegally tapping his phones. They are not big fans of The Donald. So will Trump be the savior in producing good paying jobs and reducing income disparity and inequality? Do not hold your breath.

Tax reform is also high on the agenda. Tax reform for Trump and for the Republicans means lower taxes for the rich and super-rich. It is not likely that the working class will get more than a few crumbs. The envisioned tax breaks also mean sky rocketing deficits, which will spur the call for more cuts to safety net programs like child care, education and affordable housing. Entitlement cuts will not be far behind. Another nail in the coffin for any hope of working people benefiting from the Trump presidency.

Speaking of housing, Trump is calling for a huge cut of over $6 billion to the HUD budget, which will cut the number of Housing Choice Vouchers, gut already troubled public housing authorities, and virtually eliminate block grant programs which produce dollars for localities to help distressed neighborhoods and fight homelessness. My entire career has been in affordable housing, and I view the current situation as the most dire I have ever seen. You think we have a homeless problem now. Just wait until these cuts go into effect.

One might counter by arguing that the safety net programs help the poor, not the working class, so destroying the social safety net will not really be a problem for these Trump supporters since working people are supposed to look down on the lazy, no good deadbeats who have only themselves to blame for their poverty. Wrong. The era of the so called “welfare queens” died with welfare reform under Clinton. The poor are the working class. They have jobs—often multiple jobs—it is just that the jobs they have pay very little, offer no benefits, may be part time, and are often unstable.

So the agenda of the populist Donald Trump offers nothing for the people who are responsible for his election. The multiple billionaires on his cabinet do not give a twit about the working class nor does anyone in his administration. It is not clear how long it will take for his ardent, white working class supporters to realize they have been had. It could be as early as the elections in 2018 when the tide could begin to shift. It may be later. At some point they are going to figure out they have been duped, and it will not be a pretty picture for Trump or for the Republicans. The challenge to the Democrats is to offer positive, practical alternatives that do make a difference in the lives of the working class.






President Pence

“President Pence, President Pence.” Get used to it because you are going to be saying it a lot. It is not a matter of if but when.

The outrageous Trump tweets about Obama beginning around 6:30 am on Saturday mark the beginning of the drip, drip, drip that will eventually end up in a pool of slimy water so vast and so deep that except for the die-hard Trump/Bannon fanatics no one will be willing to throw Trump a life vest. He apparently is accusing Obama of “McCarthyism” and illegal wire tapping in order to divert the attention from the Russian inquiry concerning their rigging the presidential election. The New York Times and Washington Post now report that at least six people connected with the Trump Campaign had repeated contacts with Russian operatives during the campaign when Russian email hacking was taking place. Outright collusion has not yet been established, but one has to ask, what to you think they were talking about, the weather.

It is over, Republicans. Suck it up.

“But no,” you say, “no one thought he would get nominated, and certainly not elected. And the spineless House Republicans and Senators will never vote for impeachment no matter what Trump has done or will do.”

You are probably right. Trump will not get impeached. He will quit.

Trump could quit for a number of reasons, and there are certainly a lot of valid ones lurking on the horizon: The Russian inquiry shows probable collision between Trump operatives and Putin operatives. The Republican Congress shows that it is actually dysfunctional and can’t or won’t put a nail in the much heralded Obamacare coffin or pass any legislation which will help the white working class. Once the Republican Establishment gets its tax cuts and deregulation, it signals it is ready to dump him. His cabinet is at each other’s throats, and no one seems to have a clue about foreign policy. The Saturday Night Live satires continue to set ratings records. The fledging anti Trump resistance movement swells. There is a major uproar and pushback on massive deportations. The unfake press continues its unrelenting criticism of everything he is doing. The list is long.

But none of these reasons is why he will quit. He will quit because he is not having any fun and because he realizes that all this president stuff is actually hurting his brand. Just look at the guy. Have you ever seen a smile that did not look forced? What about his mad tweets, his ranting and raving to his staff, his inarticulate, angry remarks when not using a teleprompter? This is one unhappy camper. And no wonder. His wife and young son remain in New York, and he shuffles around an empty White House in the middle of the night unable to find a single person who will talk to him. I can’t imagine that he has any real friends. And he has got to be wondering what he got himself into. Talk about in over your head! The guy can’t even read a briefing paper without graphs and illustrations. He has got to be scared stiff.

And what about his brand? There just aren’t that many foreign diplomats, spies, and billionaire tycoons in the world to fill up the rooms in his myriad luxury hotel and business empire. Falling occupancy and falling sales, when you get down to it, are probably the only things that he really understands or that will capture his attention. When that happens, he is history. Outa here, baby. Hasta la vista!

So then we get Pence.

Pence, at best, is a mixed bag. He is a quintessential, right wing Republican and an ardent cheerleader for his boss. Unlike Trump, however, he actually seems to believe in all the things hard core Republicans are supposed to believe in—small government, lower taxes, minimal safety net, strong military, free trade, pro big business and anti labor. In addition he has been a strong supporter of the NRA and a strong opponent of abortion and LGBT rights. It is not clear whether he acknowledges evolution is valid and whether climate change is real. Before he won elected office, he was a conservative talk show host. In short, for us liberals and progressives, he is a nightmare. Pence is so far to the right on virtually every policy issue, he would not have had a chance of getting elected president on his own merits. He certainly would not have captured the imagination of the white working class the way the faux anti establishment candidate Trump did.

On the other hand, unlike Trump, he seems to be a decent person. His Christian faith seems genuine. Raised as a Catholic he became a born again Evangelical following a conversion experience and attends a non-denominational, Evangelical mega church. I have always been perplexed by how Evangelical Christians can enthusiastically support someone like Trump and remain true to Christian beliefs of love, acceptance, helping the poor, and promoting peace and justice. But many of them do– as do many Christians who are not Evangelicals–and as a Christian myself I honor their sincerity regarding their faith though I do not agree with them.

The big question regarding a Pence presidency is will his Christian faith and human decency come through and allow him to back off from his extremist policy views and move toward the middle. Will he be a leader of all people, not just those who agree with him? Will he try to bring the country back together again?


Of course, the scenario I have just described is pure conjecture. I have no idea how we are going to get through the Trump mess and what will happen next. Trump appears to be on-the-ropes and hasn’t even confronted a single crisis not of his own making. How much worse does it have to get before he throws in the towel? But he could surprise us again.

But this I do know: Our country is facing a real crisis. We have as president someone totally unqualified for the job who has gotten off to the worst start of any president in U.S. history. He is a loose cannon with strongman tendencies. Our very democracy is in danger. Except for the period leading up to the Civil War, we have never been more divided. If Pence does actually end up as president, he will have to face a crisis far greater than Gerald Ford did when Nixon imploded. Ford was the right man for the job at that time and helped pull us through the Watergate crisis. Could Pence pull us through the times we are now experiencing? The stakes have never been higher.






Greatest Fake Speech of All Time

It is now official. Except for the reporters working for Fake News Organizations who are Enemies of the People, fake speech critics from all over the world rate Trump’s speech to a joint session of Congress last night as the greatest fake speech ever delivered. I was curious when I read this and decided to get in touch with the renown Shorthorn Jaspers, who is executive director of the Fake Speech Institute, an Alt-Right affiliate. Here is my verbatim interview:

Me: Why did you report that this was the greatest fake speech ever?

Jaspers: First because it was, but there are many reasons. First, Trump did not call upon his enthusiastic base to pounce on the Democrats across the aisle and beat the you-know-what out of them. Second, because he did not ridicule anyone who was handicapped or in a wheel chair and in fact said nice things about the woman who was in a wheel chair. Ditto for the wife and family of the Seal who was killed in that successful military operation in Yemen. And he did not mention the Enemies of the People, those horrid reporters from the NY Times and Washington Post and CNN, a single time. He didn’t even single out the slimy, no good Muslims in the world for their curse upon humanity. He did not announce he was throwing Crooked Hillary in jail. I mean, how good can he get? How presidential! Great restraint and dignity. This was Trump rising to the occasion. In fact no one thought he could get through an hour without attacking at least someone, so this is big news, very big. We are all very proud and, frankly, relieved.

Me: What about his policies?

Jaspers: Well the big news here is that he did not declare that he was throwing out every one of the 11 million plus no good, illegal immigrants tomorrow. Of course, this is very controversial since many in his base expected him to do just that and are enraged. But they know it will happen eventually, and in the meantime we will get a $40 billion wall. So all in all, I would say the immigration piece is a plus. There might even be an opening to talk to Democrats about some kind of deal.

Me: That was the highlight for me as well. If we could actually get a bipartisan immigration bill which allows undocumented immigrants to stay, that would be great.

Jaspers: You know his enraged base does not agree with you.

Me: What else?

Jaspers: Well there is a lot. He is going to kill that terrible plague that has cursed our country for seven years, Obamacare, and replace it with a new system where more people will be fully insured for less cost and everyone is happy. It will be wonderful. No one will lose any benefits they got under Obamacare. The individual mandate will be history, and the cost will be greatly reduced. Second, he is going to usher in massive tax cuts the likes of which no one has ever seen. Our hope is that before his first term is up no one with substantial net worth and income will have to pay any taxes, and this is a real start. Third, he is going to spend $40 billion on the new wall, which is essential to keeping out the rapists and murderers and druggies from Mexico even though more are leaving the U.S. than arriving, and fourth, he will up the military budget by $50 billion. Fifth, he will kill every government regulation he can get his hands on. This is great news because it means jobs, jobs and more jobs.

Me: But how can he pay for all this while lowering taxes?

Jaspers: Listen, this is just the beginning. He said he is also going to spend $1 trillion on fixing up bridges and roads, offer paid family leave, rebuild the horrid inner cities, and keep all jobs in America. He did not say it in his speech, but I fully believe that he will personally close down any business that tries to relocate out of the U.S. or import goods. Manufacturing jobs will all come back, and America will be great again. You can forget about buying those cheap, no good Chinese or Mexican products in Walmart. This is a new era, a turning point in human history.

Me: But I just don’t get it. You are talking about trillions of dollars in tax relief, mainly for the rich, and yet the costs of the wall, the infrastructure initiative, the military and the various social programs will add trillions of dollars to the budget. Won’t this result in a huge budget deficit?

Jaspers: No. It will be paid for by slashing food stamps, the EPA budget, the arts and humanities budgets and the so called “safety net” programs. Plus the economy will start growing at double what it is now—from less than two percent to over four percent. When he wins his second term in 2020, there will be no budget deficit.

Me: Anything else you would like to pass on to our readers?

Jaspers: Yes. This is the beginning of a revolution. Trump was elected by a landslide and enjoys unparalleled popularity. This will only increase as America becomes great again and when he or one of his family members is still in power in 2024 and 2028 and in 2032, and beyond; and there is no   opposition from anyone, no fake news, no protests or despicable, so called “resistance.” Then you will know how great he is, his family is, and how great America is. Historians will then set the record straight. But make no mistake: His fake speech last night was the greatest fake speech in all of human history.

Me: Thank you for your time and insights.