US Politics in Trump era
If you’ve been wondering which environmental protections the incoming administration will target and how exactly how they’ll try to undo them, take a look at the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s legislative agenda, “Free to Prosper.” They are classifying environmental regulations as "war on affordable energy". They are also claiming that climate regulations effect the poor, where in truth the poor are disproportionately affected by climate change
Article raises legitimate concerns regarding Donald Trump's choice for Ambassador to Israel David Freedman, a right wing, pro settler bankruptcy lawyer who is characterized as to the right of Netanyahu. Trump's son in law Jared Kushner and his family also have intense interest in Israeli affairs and the family foundation has donated tens of thousands of dollars to west bank institutions.
In his "Thank You" tour Donald Trump openly admits that many promises like "Lock her up", and "Drain the Swamp" which he claims he hated before he understood that it resonated with his voters where just talking points and not actually a plan for his administration.
President-elect Donald J. Trump on Thursday named David M. Friedman, a bankruptcy lawyer aligned with the Israeli far right, as his nominee for ambassador to Israel, elevating a campaign adviser who has questioned the need for a two-state solution and has likened left-leaning Jews in America to the Jews who aided the Nazis in the Holocaust.
Investigative reporter Greg Palast has just returned from Michigan, where he went to probe the state’s closely contested election. Trump won Michigan by fewer than 11,000 votes out of nearly 4.8 million votes cast. Green Party presidential contender Dr. Jill Stein attempted to force Michigan to hold a recount, but a federal judge ordered Michigan’s Board of Elections to stop the state’s electoral recount. One big question remains: Why did 75,335 ballots go uncounted?
Israel wants the US to move its embassy to Jerusalem in essence recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital. The question of Jerusalem’s status is the most sensitive and complicated issue in the long-running conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. It is fraught with political, religious and nationalist implications that potentially could create an uproar throughout the Middle East and the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims.
This is a review of the Trump restaurant in Trump tower. Trump reacted sharply by tweeting his displeasure about this review. This is an example of how liberal backlash to Trump. Its a great piece of writing!
For all the criticism and intrigue about Rex Tillerson's ties to Russia, his lack of any conventional foreign policy experience (despite having contended with various world leaders) and status as an oil company executive, just why did Trump pick him? Article suggests that the only reasonable guess is his willingness to execute a friendly deal with Russia
It's impossible to present the evidence that Russia hacked the DNC without using words like "possibly," "appears," "connects," and "indicates." We should also bear in mind that private security firm CrowdStrike’s frequently cited findings of Russian responsibility were essentially paid for by the DNC, who contracted their services in June. It’s highly unusual for evidence of a crime to be assembled on the victim’s dime. If we’re going to blame the Russian government for disrupting our presidential election - easily construed as an act of war — we need to be damn sure of every single shred of evidence. Guesswork and assumption could be disastrous.
The WikiLeaks release of internal emails from the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign constituted a "conscious effort by a nation-state to attempt to achieve a specific effect," the head of the National Security Agency said Tuesday.
Trumps choice for Secretary of state in the face of allegations that Russia interfered with US elections and Mr. Tillerson's business dealing with Putin reek of "conflict of interest". Mr. Trump himself had promised to clarify his involvement with his businesses during his presidency which he did by tweeting that his sons will be running his business and they will not sign any new deals, backing out of a promised press conference on this topic.
Mr. Tillerson, was responsible for undermining US government and signing Oil deals with various regimes around the world. In Iraq he empowered the Kurds, in Africa he signed deals with repressive regimes, outing other oil companies and undermining democracies.
Records show that someone started dumping Lockheed stocks 6 minute before Donald Trump started criticizing Lockheed. The amount is not known but significant enough to be noticed. Since Trumps taxes are not public we can't know if his own people were involved. Lets see if this becomes a pattern
ICE contracted with Palantir, founded by Trump adviser Peter Thiel, to create an intelligence-sharing database used to track and deport immigrants. Working closely with a president-elect who has pledged to dramatically expand ICE, Thiel’s varied connections to the immigration agency place him in a position to potentially benefit financially from a deportation campaign that carries highly personal stakes for millions of Americans.
The conclusion that Russia intervened in the election to help Donald J. Trump was based on what many believe is overwhelming circumstantial evidence, which is often the most intelligence analysts have at their disposal. But this article also notes that there is skepticism within the American government, particularly at the F.B.I., that this evidence adds up to proof that the Russians had the specific objective of getting Mr. Trump elected.
If its proven that the Russians have interfered in US elections the courts can install Clinton as the president. This is due to a federal court ruling out of Pennsylvania that invalidated a state senate election due to fraud, ordering the winner be removed from office and the subsequent vacancy be filled by his opponent.
Here is an account of an election official in Detroit explaining how the Trump team blocked the recount efforts with a team of tens of lawyers making sure they couldn't carry out their duties. There was one green party attorney and no Hillary or DNC attorneys to fight back.
Fake news is not one sided. To say Clinton lost because of fake news is disingenuous. This report gives an example of how media and Hillary Clinton camp spread fake news to discredit wikileaks stories.
Mr. Trump wants to cancel the order for Airforce one. This article explains why Airforce one is so expensive and why its necessary for the President of the United States to travel in one
Donald Trump picks Scott Pruitt, the Oklahoma attorney general, and key architect of the legal battle against President Obama’s climate change policies, while admitting that there is a connection between human activity and climate change. He had also met with Al Gore which instilled some hope for the environmentalist.
Donald Trump who had campaigned to change Washington and rid it of its lobbyist is demonstrating that he has no intention to do so by picking Donald McGahn as his chief ethics lawyer. McGahn's background includes as counsel and ethics advisor to former Rep Tom Delay (R-TX) who was indicted for conspiring to launder corporate cash into campaign contributions for Delay’s PAC.
It is apparent that Donald Trump believes that international diplomacy is akin to a real estate negotiation. Experts would tell you that international diplomacy requires a cool head and long term planning. Will Mr. Trump continue his twitter outburst once in office?
In a TV interview with Greg Hayes, the CEO of United Technologies stated that reasons for keeping jobs in Indiana was government contracts,prospect of favorable regulations. He also said that Mexican workers are 80% cheaper and more dedicated. Furthermore UTC believes that with automation they can stay competitive in the US which will still result in job loss for US workers.
On Thursday afternoon, the committee tweeted a Breitbart article alleging: “Global Temperatures Plunge. Icy Silence from Climate Alarmists”. The story linked to a British tabloid, the Daily Mail, which claimed that global land temperatures were plummeting, and that humans were not responsible for years of steadily increasing heat.
Donald Trump called the Taiwan president committing a huge diplomatic blunder. No US president had done so in the past 40 years since China doesn't recognize Taiwan as an independent country. Now it turns out the the Donald wants to build hotels in Taiwan.
Security experts claims that a preponderance of evidence (but no smoking gun) points to secret communication between Trump organization and Russians. An email server that was setup for mass email was now receiving strangely small loads of traffic and communicating in secretive fashion and designed to obscure its own existence. Furthermore the Trump campaign had ordered its campaign to rewrite its position on Ukraine, maneuvering GOP toward a policy preferred by Russia.
US 'security' aid to to both Israel and Palestinian Authority is keeping Palestinians occupied. By providing aid to the security sector of West bank and Gaza has resulted in half Palestinian public sector civil servants to be employed in security. The Palestinian security now restrains mass uprisings by suppressing Palestinians who resist Israel's occupation.
Bernie Sanders explains why this deal with carrier is the opposite of what Trump promised during his campaign. He promised to tax the corporations if they shipped jobs overseas not giving them tax breaks. He said Carrier took Trump hostage and won!
Why does an arthritis drug that costs $2,669 here cost $822 in Switzerland? Article argues that this simply happens because in other places in the world governments regulate and negotiate drug prices but in the US they don't. My question is why is it that government can negotiate on outsourcing the way Mr, Trump just did with the Carrier jobs but they don't do this with the drug companies?
Excellent article, discusses the role and power of the president in pressuring businesses to do the right thing for the American people. It points out that Obama has used those powers to influence businesses in certain areas like pay hikes but refused to do that when it came to outsourcing.
Basically what is being promised by the Trump team doesn't match the plan unveiled in September. Economist are not clear of the effects. They claim that cutting corporate taxes will bring back jobs but experts can not reach the same conclusion when they run the numbers
President Barack Obama is on track to impose a last-minute regulation which would help foreign graduates capture good jobs at American companies, universities and hospitals that are sought by American-born graduates.
Democrats in rural America have a blunt message for the rest of their party: We saw the electoral disaster coming — and it’s your fault.Strategists and party officials say their warnings about the party’s lackluster outreach to rural voters went unheeded by Democratic leaders for years, culminating in this month’s shock defeat to Donald Trump. A presidential candidate who actually performed poorly in many cities and suburbs nonetheless scored an upset victory because of a surge in support from small towns and rural areas.
Since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, politicians have periodically announced with fanfare that they would introduce a bill to strip the citizenship of Americans accused of terrorism. The idea tends to attract brief attention, but fades away, in part because the Supreme Court long ago ruled that the Constitution does not permit the government to take a person’s citizenship against his or her will.
If President-elect Donald J. Trump wanted a cabinet secretary who could help him dismantle and replace President Obama’s health care law, he could not have found anyone more prepared than Representative Tom Price, who has been studying how to accomplish that goal for more than six years.
Stein’s Recount Crusade In Pennsylvania Riddled With Hurdles…Like The Fact That She Missed The Deadline
Dear Greens, liberals, progressives, and any other Clinton supporter. Clinton lost the election. There was no tampering, the Obama administration has even confirmed that much, and it’s time to make way for President Donald J. Trump. This is just becoming an exercise in cruelty, where the Left is keeping some hope alive when in reality—all is lost. Old, sick Hillary is now becoming sore loser Hillary—and losing with grace has gone right out the window.
Jill Stein’s attempts to secure presidential election recounts hit hurdles in Pennsylvania on Monday, while a furious Donald Trump began raising money to “fight back” against the efforts to review his victory. Stein was scrambling to recruit more than 25,000 supporters to submit affidavits requesting recounts on her behalf to local elections officials in Pennsylvania, which does not allow the kind of statewide request she submitted in Wisconsin last week.
Democracy depends on a free and independent press, which is why all tyrants try to squelch it. They use seven techniques that, worryingly, President-elect Donald Trump already employs.
President-elect Donald J. Trump said on Sunday that he had fallen short in the popular vote in the general election only because millions of people had voted illegally, leveling the baseless claim as part of a daylong storm of Twitter posts voicing anger about a three-state recount push.
The campaign’s general counsel, Marc Elias, said in an online post that while it had found no evidence of sabotage, the campaign felt “an obligation to the more than 64 million Americans who cast ballots for Hillary Clinton”.
The extraordinary phenomenon of fake news spread by Facebook and other social media during the 2016 presidential election has been largely portrayed as a lucky break for Donald Trump.. But a closer look reveals that some of the biggest fake news providers were run by experienced political operators well within the orbit of Donald Trump’s political advisers and consultants.
With an argument similar to the one made by political scientist Adolph Reed prior to the election, Chomsky insists that voters did not have to ignore Clinton’s serious shortcomings in order to recognize Trump as the much more serious threat.
Barack Obama has two faces. After Trump’s victory and Hillary’s defeat, the public Obama has been gracious and diplomatic. His lectures to Trump, directly and indirectly, are couched in praise. He echoed the feeling of millions on both sides when he said, "We are now all rooting for his success”. That’s a lie. Or rather a disguise.
The industry's business model is pulling in the wrong direction for democracy. We believe that the business model for media in the United States is broken; that if we're going to have the kind of journalism that democracy requires, we're going to need different ways of paying for it; and that critical among those will be reader support in many different forms.
On Wednesday afternoon, near the start of one of the year's final news droughts, former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein announced a new campaign: to pay for recounts in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. The news went first to the journalist Greg Palast, then on Stein's Facebook page, then in an interview with the Russian propaganda channel RT.
Donald Trump has gone from originally having 1,409,467 votes to now having just 1,404,536 votes in Wisconsin. In other words, a total of 4,931 votes were reported for Trump on election night that never existed. In contrast Hillary Clinton has gone from 1,382,210 votes down to 1,382,011 votes, a difference of less than two hundred votes. In other words, Wisconsin essentially had Clinton’s vote total correct all along, but is now acknowledging that nearly five thousand of the supposed votes for Trump simply never existed.
In George Lakoff’s book on the 2004 US election,Don’t Think of an Elephant!, he explains how letting your opponents dominate the conversation usually ensures their victory. In other words, if liberals spend the next four years reacting to Trump instead of being proactive and focusing on what they want, they will lose in 2020.
Ross played a role in the president-elect’s tax-cut and infrastructure plans and has suggested that much of America is disgruntled because the economy has left middle-class workers behind. “Part of the reason why I’m supporting Trump is that I think we need a more radical, new approach to government at least in the US from what we’ve had before,” Ross told CNBC in June.
The New York Times article signaled that the establishment of the Democratic Party is opposed to Ellison's bid for DNC chair. The piece also notes some of the concerns about Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress, that have been aired in recent weeks: He has left-wing views on the Middle East conflict; in his youth he had some affinity for Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan; and he would be a part-time, not a full-time, leader of the DNC.
A mere fortnight after becoming President-elect, Donald Trump’s tariff threat gained a tactical victory in the battle to keep American jobs at home.Trump announced via Twitter that Ford Motor Company intentions to transfer SUV production south of the border were shelved. Chairman Bill Ford “advised me that he will be keeping the Lincoln plant in Kentucky - no Mexico,” Trump tweeted last Thursday.
President-elect Donald Trump holds stock in the company building the disputed Dakota Access oil pipeline, and pipeline opponents warn that Trump's investments could affect any decision he makes on the $3.8 billion project as president.
History will demand to know which side were you on. This is not a question of politics or party or even policy. This is a question about the very fundamentals of our beautiful experiment in a pluralistic democracy ruled by law. When I see neo-Nazis raise their hands in terrifying solute, in public, in our nation's capital, I shudder in horror. When I see that action mildly rebuked by a boilerplate statement from the President-elect whom these bigots have praised, the anger in me grows
United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, today sent a letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) requesting a review of President-elect Donald Trump's "chaotic" transition. The lawmakers asked GAO to examine conflicts of interest related to business holdings of Mr. Trump and his family, potential violations of protocol and national security concerns related to Mr. Trump's communications with foreign leaders, and transparency related to the use of taxpayer funds in the transition.
Donald Trump is poised to eliminate all climate change research conducted by Nasa as part of a crackdown on “politicized science”, his senior adviser on issues relating to the space agency has said. Nasa’s Earth science division is set to be stripped of funding in favor of exploration of deep space, with the president-elect having set a goal during the campaign to explore the entire solar system by the end of the century.
A top adviser to Donald Trump on tech policy matters proposed all but abolishing the nation's telecom regulator last month, foreshadowing possible moves by the president-elect to sharply reduce the Federal Communications Commission's role as a consumer protection watchdog.
Thirteen days after winning the presidential election, Donald Trump announced on Twitter that no one should worry about the potential conflicts of interest he could face over his range of global properties because everyone knew about them when they elected him. He blamed any questions of impropriety on the media for reporting on them..
Hillary Clinton's campaign is being urged by a number of top computer scientists to call for a recount of vote totals in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, according to a source with knowledge of the request.
Days after Trump spoke to Argentina’s president his stalled Buenos Aires tower project picked up steam
Twitter briefly went wild on Nov. 21, with a story alleging that president-elect Donald Trump had pressured Argentinian president Mauricio Macri to push through a stalled project for a Trump Tower in Buenos Aires in a phone call a week earlier. Three days after the phone call between Trump and Macri on Nov.14, Trump’s associates at Buenos Aires firm YY Development Group announced that the construction project would go ahead, in an interview with La Nación
Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu bans ministers from talking to Donald Trump’s team without prior permission
Mr Netanyahu congratulated Mr Trump on his election two weeks ago but cautioned his coalition government to refrain from speaking publicly about their views on the new US President-elect after Education Minister Naftali Bennett said Mr Trump’s victory meant that “the era of a Palestinian state” was over.
Donald Trump’s nominee for US attorney general has been accused of bringing criminal prosecutions against a pair of black officials in Alabama as retaliation for their roles in derailing his nomination to be a judge. The officials faced federal corruption charges in the southern district of Alabama, where Jeff Sessions was the top federal prosecutor, after their allegations of racism caused the US Senate to deny Sessions the judicial appointment in 1986.
As you can tell, I am not particularly impressed with the social justice engagement of the precious little pop tarts who decided to skip class to march - 40 people strong! - down a Main Line thoroughfare to let the suburban police department that keeps them safe know it is nothing but a ritzy extension of the KKK.
Aghast, there are cries of nepotism with reference to a 1967 law that was belatedly targeted at President John F. Kennedy’s appointment of brother Bobby as Attorney General. The legislation might be called LBJ’s revenge as Lyndon Johnson hated Bobby Kennedy and this was, in the way of the famously vengeful LBJ, a way of getting even with the Kennedys, although by 1967 RFK was comfortably ensconced in the U.S. Senate representing New York.
President-elect Donald Trump’s charitable foundation has admitted to the IRS that it violated a legal prohibition against “self-dealing,” which bars nonprofit leaders from using their charity’s money to help themselves, their businesses or their families. The foundation checked “yes” on the IRS tax filing form for 2015 when asked if it had transferred “income or assets to a disqualified person.”
At first, Sen. Bernie Sanders’s tone with Donald Trump was conciliatory: “To the degree that Mr. Trump is serious about pursuing policies that improve the lives of working families in this country, I and other progressives are prepared to work with him,” he said in a statement after Election Day. Then he saw Trump’s infrastructure plan. Sanders’s tone changed; he tweeted that the president-elect’s plan for infrastructure is a “scam,” proving just how difficult working with a Trump administration will be in practice:
What Sanders’s remarks about "identity politics" say about the Democratic Party’s future. Having the party embrace both gender and racial diversity is a necessary first step, Sanders said. But if “identity politics” means promoting black and female candidates who don’t have “the guts to take on the oligarchy,” Sanders argued, it’s largely beside the point.
The House passed a massive National Defense Authorization Act late Wednesday, and tucked inside of it, a provision that would allow federal contractors to fire employees for being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.The language, slipped into the bill by Rep. Steve Russell (R-Okla.), would dismantle President Barack Obama’s 2014 executive action that makes it illegal for government contractors to fire or harass employees based on their sexual orientation or gender identity
Some journalists suggest that the hundreds of conservative millionaires and billionaires organized by Charles and David Koch lost relevance this time – because the two brothers personally refused to endorse Trump and their donor network cut back originally projected spending from almost a billion to a “mere” $750 million. But we beg to differ.
For a number of years, Trump and his Argentine partners have been trying to build a major office building in Buenos Aires. The project has been held up by a series of complications tied to financing, importation of building materials and various permitting requirements. According to a report out of Argentina, when Argentine President Mauricio Macri called President-Elect Trump to congratulate him on his election, Trump asked Macri to deal with the permitting issues that are currently holding up the project.
President-elect Donald Trump intends to launch a broad legislative agenda that includes cutting taxes, rolling back the Affordable Care Act, growing the military and rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure. The question is how congressional Republicans, after eight years of apocalyptic warnings about the growing national debt, will respond to the dire fiscal implications of proposals that would likely send the deficit soaring.
President-elect Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress are drawing up plans to take on the government bureaucracy they have long railed against, by eroding job protections and grinding down benefits that federal workers have received for a generation. Hiring freezes, an end to automatic raises, a green light to fire poor performers, a ban on union business on the government’s dime and less generous pensions — these are the contours of the blueprint emerging under Republican control of Washington in January.
Mr. Trump, whose antagonism toward the news media was unusual even for a modern presidential candidate, described the television networks as dishonest in their reporting and shortsighted in missing the signs of his upset victory. He criticized some in the room by name, including CNN’s president, Jeffrey A. Zucker, according to multiple people briefed on the meeting who were granted anonymity to describe confidential discussions.
As the Obama administration prepares to hand-off its vast, opaque institutions of surveillance and covert warfare to Donald Trump, many have begun to worry anew about these powers. The new president-elect and his cabinet will have unprecedented power to conduct secret wars and assassinations around the globe, thanks in part to programs bequeathed to him by his liberal predecessor. The aggressive posture that Obama took towards whistleblowers also sets a precedent for Trump to step-up attacks against those inside the government who dare to shed light on such programs.
Turkey is a nation in crisis, scarred by government crackdowns following a failed coup attempt and on a potential collision course with the West. It is also home to a valuable revenue stream for the president-elect’s business empire: Trump Towers Istanbul. Donald Trump’s company has been paid up to $10 million by the tower’s developers since 2014 to affix the Trump name atop the luxury complex, whose owner, one of Turkey’s biggest oil and media conglomerates, has become an influential megaphone for the country’s increasingly repressive regime.
Congresswoman Katherine Clark has introduced legislation to ensure that U.S. Presidents are required to resolve any conflicts of interest with regard to financial interests and official responsibilities. Current law prohibits federal office holders from engaging in government business when they stand to gain profit. The President and Vice President are currently exempt from this statute. Clark’s Presidential Accountability Act removes this exemption and requires the President and Vice President to place their assets in a certified blind trust or disclose to the Office of Government Ethics and the public when they make a decision that affects their personal finances
Democrats blame the voters for being duped, self-destructive, even stupid. This year, with the rejection of Hillary Clinton, we’ve gone from being a racist nation that twice elected a black man to being a racist and sexist nation for twice not electing a woman – and for electing Trump. Oddly, the black man who beat her the first time avoided the sexist label because the left manufactures the labels. In the ultimate fit of irony, leftists even have taken to blaming media bias for their losses.
Friday evening, the Washington Post reported that about 100 foreign diplomats gathered at President-elect Donald Trump’s hotel in Washington, DC to “to sip Trump-branded champagne, dine on sliders and hear a sales pitch about the U.S. president-elect’s newest hotel.” The tour included a look at the hotel’s $20,000 a night “town house” suite. The Post also quoted some of the diplomats saying they intended to stay at the hotel in order to ingratiate themselves to the incoming president.
The meeting, with Indian executives linked to an apartment tower bearing Mr. Trump’s name, raises questions about how he will separate his business dealings from his politics. Washington ethics lawyers said that a meeting with Indian real estate partners, regardless of what was discussed, raised conflict of interest questions for Mr. Trump, who could be perceived as using the presidency to advance his business interests.
He’s paying fraud fines and collecting bribes — and distracting you with Hamilton tweets. The truth is that nothing about the Hamilton story - is in any way important to how he runs the country. By contrast, foreign governments directly putting money into Donald Trump’s pocket is very important. The fact that these attempted bribes are being paid to a man who is also paying out millions of dollars to avoid standing trial for his corrupt business practices is very important.
A historian recalls a conversation with the Donald Trump adviser, which may provide a window into Bannon's views on what's next for the U.S. During the 1990s, two amateur historians, Neil Howe and the late William Strauss, developed a new theory of American history in two books. They identified an 80-year cycle in American history, punctuated by great crises that destroyed an old order and created a new one. Stephen Bannon, the former head of Breitbart News who has been appointed Trump’s chief strategist in the White House, is very familiar with Strauss and Howe’s theory of crisis, and has been thinking about how to use it to achieve particular goals for quite a while.
My book exposed a grubby secret of American higher education: that the rich buy their underachieving children’s way into elite universities with massive, tax-deductible donations. It reported that New Jersey real estate developer Charles Kushner had pledged $2.5m to Harvard University not long before his son Jared was admitted to the prestigious Ivy League school, which at the time accepted about one of every nine applicants. (Nowadays, it only takes one out of 20.) I also quoted administrators at Jared’s high school, who described him as a less-than-stellar student and expressed dismay at Harvard’s decision.
“So I'm a Mexican American from a poor, rural (mostly white) town in Oklahoma. Missing from this debate? How poor whites see themselves.” They don't see themselves as poor. They don't base their identity on it. They see themselves as "temporarily embarrassed millionaires."
There may be some fake news on Facebook, but the power of the Facebook advertising platform to influence voters is very real. This is the story of how the Trump campaign used data to target African...
The Stark Contrast Between GOP’s Self-Criticism in 2012 and Democrats’ Blame-Everyone-Else Posture Now
Surveying this wreckage last week, party stalwart Matthew Yglesias of Vox minced no words: “the Obama years have created a Democratic Party that’s essentially a smoking pile of rubble.” One would assume that the operatives and loyalists of such a weak, defeated and wrecked political party would be eager to engage in some introspection and self-critique, and to produce a frank accounting of what they did wrong so as to alter their plight. In the case of 2016 Democrats, one would be quite mistaken.
Donald Trump has named more conservative hardliners for key posts, with Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions nominated as attorney general. Mr Sessions, a former prosecutor, was turned down for a federal judgeship in 1986 because of alleged racist remarks. Congressman Mike Pompeo is nominated as CIA director and retired Lt Gen Michael Flynn made national security adviser.
Billionaire donors could get lots of shiny new tools for controlling the American political system. There is really not all that much left to prevent big money from influencing American politics. Donors can already spend as much as they want on “independent” Super PACs that take out millions in political advertisements. Corporations can give as much as they want to these Super PACs, and they’re finding ways to do so entirely in secret.
Stephen Bannon, the CEO of far-right media outlet Breitbart News and Donald Trump’s newly named chief strategist, believes we are in the midst of a crisis — of both global economy and moral standing. Godlessness and libertarianism has “sapped the strength of the Judeo-Christian West to defend its ideals,” and the Muslim world is growing in numbers, Bannon told a conference at the Vatican in 2014. “Every day that we refuse to look at this as what it is, and the scale of it, and really the viciousness of it, will be a day where you will rue that we didn’t act.”
Turkish Client Paid Trump Adviser Michael Flynn’s Company “Tens of Thousands” of Dollars for Lobbying
Though Flynn is not a lobbyist himself, his company, Flynn Intel Group, is registered with Congress as a lobbying organization, and has a registered lobbyist on its staff. A Flynn Intel Group client, Kamil Ekim Alptekin, a Turkish businessman with real estate, aerospace, and consulting interests, told The Intercept on Thursday that one of his companies, Inovo BV, paid Flynn’s company “tens of thousands of dollars” for analysis on world affairs. On election day, Flynn published an opinion piece for The Hill urging U.S. support for Turkey’s controversial strongman president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and pushing for the extradition of Erdogan’s political rival, Fethullah Gülen, who now resides in Pennsylvania. “From Turkey’s point of view, Washington is harboring Turkey’s Osama bin Laden,” Flynn wrote, on November 8.