Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Day 40 01 Year, Trumpland: Hot Air

During the next three years, it will be called a State of the Union Address. The first address of a President's term, in simple called a Joint Address to Congress. Some are calling it the best speech of his political career. I am not one of them. It was another campaign speech long on promises and short on substance. And riddled with errors. Yes, the tone was improved. After 40 days in office, Lil' Donald managed both a presidential tone and mostly kept to the telpromptor. He doesn't get brownie points from me for simply doing the minimum his office requires.

Can every problem be fixed? In a Senate led by Mitchy'boy who refused to work for eight years because he didn't like President Obama? Where he broke the rules of engagment that made compromise possible? Probably not until we replace the folks who refuse to work or refuse to compromise in the House and Senate.

Let's redirect to Lil' Donald's own record. He's been in office 40 days. He finally gave an obligatory comment to hatecrime happening to our Jewish citizens. He should have done that from the beginning. His travel ban was incompetent. Lil' Donald's lies, and the lies by the White House spokespersons, are at best stupid, always unethical, and at worse dangerous. Alt-facts. That word alone is utterly unacceptable.

Lil' Donald plans to offer Congress a budget that will be dead on arrival. Demoncrats cannot, in principal, agree to his requests because they cannot support violations to human rights and the damage his direction leads our country into. The Republican Freedom Caucus is also not going to agree. There are extreme divisions in the Repubican party regarding the proposed boarder tax that make any budget almost impossible to pass. Welcome to Washington, Mr President. You should have picked up the player's manual on November 9 waiting for you at the front desk.

Lil' Donald talks about clean air, clean water and a trillion dollar in intrastructure spending while he dismantels the EPA and pushing through pipelines that threaten the drinking water of millions. Not to mention line the pockets of his trillionaire cronies and likely himself in some hidden corporation the American people do not know about. The tarriffs Lil' Donald proposes have nothing to do with bringing manufacturing jobs back to America. Those jobs belong to the robots. Job dislocation will continue with driverless cars and trucks. Soon accountants and other white color jobs will end. Taxing imports will not bring back the rust belt states. As Chuck Schumer says, it sounds like Lil' Donald favors the people but his actions favor special interests. And none of this adresses the wage earner who has seen no income growth in 25 years. 

On the way hand, Lil' Donald softened his tone toward immigration. He has suggesed there is a path to legal status for those without criminal backgrounds. However, he also has proposed VOICE, a taskforce called Victims of Immigation Crime Engagement. This is frightening to those who see this administration as encouraging hate crime. Certainly a small miniority of immigrants and illegal immiggrants have committed violent crimes. That 1% does not need it's own taskforce. 

After meeting with leaders of the healthcare industry, Lil' Donald made a comment the other day to the effect of "who knew health insurance is so complicated?" Everyone but Lil' Donald seems to have known it. Repeal and replace is a joke. But the threat to millions who have healthcare is a real and present danger not in anyway put to rest from this speech.

Lil' Donald bragged the markets brought $3 trillion in value since the election. Given the impressive state that President Obama left this country in, the rising stock markets are not surprising. Oh, and all the promise of deregulation and favoring business over the person. There has been no major volatility and there's low interest rates. That will change. What will happen when the markets crash?

Bernie Sanders spoke after the speech about the things Lil' Donald didn't say. Over half of Americans, including me, don't have anything saved for retirement but he didn't say anything about social security, Medicaid, or Medicare. Remember that during the campain he promised not to cut these programs. Indeed, he has promised a massive cut that threatens nursing home care of senior citizens and affecting healthcare of our children.

Sanders also warned that there was no mention of income equality. We have the largest gap between the wealthy and poor that we've had since the 1920s. As a result of Citizens United Federal Court decision, the protections of campain spening are gone. Lil' Donald's administration is working hard on voter suppression, making it harder for the young people, poor people, seniors and people of color to vote. While the scientific community warns of climate change, Lil' Donald promised increased dependence on fosil fuel. He did not address fixing a broken criminal justice system regarding how many people are incarcerated. He didn't discuss the need to lower the cost of college or make public colleges or universitites free or addressing the crisis of student debt.

Sanders also talked about draining the swamp into the Trump Administration. His cheif economic advisor was the former President of Golman Sacs who paid millions in fines for illegal activity. Lil' Donald also didn't mention reinstating the Glass Stegal Act.

Lil' Donald does not realize, it seems, that much of his legislation will take 60 votes to pass the Senate. If he doesn't want Democrats to stop him, he best start listening. All these grand plans are at risk of rejection by the divisions among Republicans and the Democrats. Moreover, if the Republicans can find consencus among themselves, his own party must sit down and compromise with the very Democrats they stonewalled for eight years. It seems to me that Lil' Donald is making a lot of promises he can't keep. Maybe he's just full of hot air.

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