Nel's New Day

March 1, 2017

DDT’s Speech: Lies, Contradictions

Donald J. Trump President Donald Trump address Joint Session of Congress, Washington DC - 28 Feb 2017 Donald J. Trump delivers his first address to a joint session of Congress from the floor of the House of Representatives in Washington, DC, USA, 28. Traditionally the first address to a joint session of Congress by a newly-elected president is not referred to as a State of the Union. (Rex Features via AP Images)

(Rex Features via AP Images)

The performer, the grifter, the liar, the manipulator elected president of the United States proved last night that he’s become better at reading from a teleprompter and has a better speech writer than during his campaign. Supporters of Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) are proudly commenting on his “change” although they still admit that he’s better only if one judges him against his own past and not against others. Some even raved about his speech, his first to a joint meeting of Congress. Slate’s Jacob Weisberg’s tweet was on target about praise from the media:

“Enemies of the people giving Trump positive reviews for not sounding like a ranting dictator.”

Tom Perez, new DNC chair, described it well when he said that the speech was “Steve Bannon on steroids with a smile.” The only change was stylistic after DDT finished trying to soften the audience by condemning the anti-Semitic threats and violence, followed by his first mention of two Indian immigrants shot in a Kansas bar a week ago. Earlier in the day, however, he had suggested that the Jewish people were making the calls themselves to make his supporters look bad. Another of his conspiracy theories is that President Obama is setting up protesters to make him look bad. DDT—always the victim. He spoke of support for blacks the same week that his Justice Department determined that it will support suppression of the vote by minorities in Texas.

Despite a few cheery words of hope and optimism sprinkled throughout the speech, DDT consistently talked about the horrors of the United States at this time. The only way that he can maintain his dictatorship is to convince his audience that life now in the United States is hell and that they need all his actions to make life better.

DDT’s claim that over 43 million people now lives in poverty ignores the fastest drop in almost 50 years. His repeated misrepresentation of 94 million people “out of the labor force” ignores the unemployment rate of 4.6 percent, only seven percent of the mythical number of 94 million that includes all the people who don’t want jobs—students, disabled, stay-at-home parents, retirees, etc. as well as the over two million people in prison. Using this demographic is dangerous for DDT’s statistics because trends will increase the number by the time that he’s up for re-election.

The attack on undocumented immigrants launched into “America First” rhetoric while DDT bragged about the deportation of “bad ones”—barely a step up from his references to “bad dudes” or, worse, “bad hombres.” His announcement of a new office to support victims of crimes committed by undocumented immigrants brought a groan, at this time the only “victims” of interest to DDT. Before the speech, DDT has suggested that he considered providing legal status to undocumented immigrants who had not committed serious crimes, but the white supremacist who wrote his speech ignored this idea.

DDT used his common theme, the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in another nine years, as another part of his anti-immigrant message. What brought America together, in the words of DDT’s speech writer, was “that America must put its own citizens first, because only then can we truly make America great again.” DDT asserted that only immigrants who come with money will be legally allowed into the country. The fewer, richer immigrants “will be very, very happy, indeed,” according to DDT.

DDT falsely cited a 2016 report, stating that the U.S. immigration system “costs America’s taxpayers many billions of dollars a year.” The report found exactly the opposite, that immigration helps the economy and has little impact on the employment status and wages of native-born workers. Economists agree that DDT’s new deportation rules would cost the economy trillions of dollars. He is also wrong about what immigrants can enter the country. Immigration law has clearly stated for over a century that people coming into the U.S. cannot be impoverished and that those who are public charges will be deported.

H.R. McMaster, the new National Security Advisor, warned against using the term “radical Islamic terrorism,” but DDT defiantly emphasized the words when he said that he would be signing a new Muslim ban. In addition, he repeated the lie that “the vast majority of individuals convicted for terrorism-related offenses since 9/11 came here from outside of our country.” A 2015 report found 50 Islam-inspired deaths—not all by people from “outside the country”—and the man who killed 50 people in Orlando last summer was born in the United States. “Right-wing extremists averaged 337 attacks per year in the decade after 9/11, causing a total of 254 fatalities.” White supremacists are influencing DDT to investigate any right-wing extremist terrorism.

“One of the highest [tax] rates in the world”? Nowhere near. The U.S. is one of the top ten tax friendliest countries in the world and not even in the top 30 worst ones.

DDT’s declared that he will bring jobs back from overseas by doing away with trade treaties, yet only 13.4 percent, about 750,000 jobs, have been lost to trade. The rest of them have been lost to automation or other factors “attributable to productivity growth.” Of the 70,000 jobs he bragged about creating, 68,800 were planned before the election, and 700 were the result of President Obama’s policies. In addition, some of these, such as the Intel jobs in Arizona came after the company had fired a larger number of people in Oregon.

While Republicans vigorously applauded at every sentence, especially his support of their GOPcare health plan, DDT made costly promises that must have made them shudder:

“Crumbling infrastructure will be replaced with new roads, bridges, tunnels, airports, and railways, gleaming across our very, very beautiful land.”

He also promised “massive tax relief for the middle class,” the return of “millions of jobs,” “a better health-care system for all Americans,” and lower corporate taxes. In fact, DDT’s tax plan raises taxes on single parents while disproportionately benefiting the richest Americans.

The most embarrassing part of the speech was the introduction of Carryn Owens, the widow of the Navy Seal who was killed in DDT’s first counterterrorism attack that he casually authorized over a dinner with GOP leaders such as white supremacist Steve Bannon. While she sat crying in the gallery for what seemed to be an infinity, he talked about the raid’s success (a lie) and then ad-libbed, “And Ryan is looking down right now. You know that. And he’s very happy, because I think he just broke a record.” It was vintage DDT—lying and bragging about acclamation for a grieving widow. Two parts of the failed raid were not mentioned: the Seal’s father refused to meet with DDT when his son was returned and demanded an investigation; and the commandos knew they had lost the element of surprise but were still ordered to complete the compromised mission. In addition, DDT may have claimed at the speech that the raid was a success, but earlier in the day he blamed the generals earlier for its failure.

Missing from the speech was any mention of climate issues although DDT promised to “promote clean air and clear water.” That was a few hours after he signed an executive order to eradicate the Clean Water Rule, affecting waterways that 117 million people in the U.S. rely on for drinking water.

Steve Benen described the substance-free speech as “a sugar high than political sustenance.” Like a campaign speech, it promised voters everything with no explanation of how he would deliver. The purpose for a speech to Congress is to give it direction, badly needed help in the severely divided GOP that is fighting over such issues as health care, tax code, military, infrastructure, and “the wall.” DDT confirmed his campaigning goal with a letter on his website designed to raise money for 2020 by stating that last night was the FEC deadline for the quarter and that he would be given a list of donor names. Every action that DDT takes for as long as he lasts as president will be to either gain votes or make money for himself.

51-lies-in-61-minutesDDT lied at least 51 times during his 61-minute address—too many lies to clarify in such a short space. Suffice it to say, he continues to lie at least three-fourths of the time. When he isn’t lying, he’s changing his position. He cannot be trusted in any way.

Attention for DDT’s speech may be ephemeral since tonight’s disclosure that U.S. Attorney General failed to disclose during his confirmation hearings that he talked with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. twice last year while he was a U.S. senator from Alabama and “surrogate” for DDT’s campaign. DDT’s desired pivot from last night’s speech has made a far right turn back to his possible connection to Russia and Vladimir Putin.

February 22, 2017

Deportation Guidelines Chaotic, Destructive to All

Dictator Donald Trump’s (DDT) timing is suspect in his attempt to distract people from the horrific things he does. On the same day that he announced he was not racist—trying to cover for his avoidance of the topic since he was inaugurated–his administration released new draconian guidelines for deportation and the construction of his border wall. The next day Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly went to Mexico to mend fences that DDT had put up between him and Mexico’s president, Enrique Peña Nieto.

It’s the same approach that DDT used on January 25 when he gave out his first executive orders on immigration and the wall, leading the Mexican president to cancel his plans to visit the United States within a few days. Since then, DDT has threatened to send U.S. military into Mexico to battle crime because Peña Nieto couldn’t handle it. This conversation followed DDT’s frequent campaign accusations that Mexico deliberately sent their drug dealers and rapists to the U.S.

With the new guidelines for deportation, DDT seems to think that any undocumented person in the United States just gets dropped on the other side of the border, no matter their country of origin. Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD), one of a group of U.S. senators visiting Mexico last weekend, said that migrants to the U.S. are largely not from Mexico but crossing the country from other parts of Latin America. He said that the U.S. needs Mexico’s cooperation to deal with that problem. DDT’s radical anti-Mexico rhetoric has energized progressive Mexican political parties, worrying business leaders on both sides of the border, and thousands of people rallied against DDT in Mexico City a few days ago.

According to the new guidelines, anyone with an immigration violation can be deported. No longer will the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency prioritize the detention and deportation of undocumented immigrants who commit serious offenses. No “classes or categories of removal aliens” will be exempt from potential enforcement, according to the ICE website. Undocumented workers can be deported for paying taxes if they are using a false Social Security number. Immigrants who have completed their jail sentences are on the deportation list.

The old guidelines subjected immigrants to “expedited removal” without pleading their cases in front of immigration judges if they were caught within 14 days of entering the country without authorization and within 100 miles of the two contiguous countries of Canada and Mexico. New guidelines changed that time limit to two years and allows officials bypass due process protections such as court hearings during that time.

Unaccompanied children fleeing violence in their home countries to seek humanitarian relief will be affected by the new guidelines. International law requires that these non-citizens have the right to make a case that they left these countries to avoid persecution or death, but they will be deported if they cannot immediately present documents explaining a “credible” fear to apply for asylum. The 59,692 unaccompanied children who came across the southern U.S. border in 2016 face this deportation. New guidelines indicate that children reunited with their parents in the U.S. will no longer be “unaccompanied” and can be deported.

ICE can take away children from parents legally in the U.S. who smuggle them into the country under the pretense of child abuse by submitting them to this process and be referred for criminal prosecution. They may also face charges of human trafficking. Attorney General Jeff Sessions had unsuccessfully tried to persuade past AG Loretta Lynch to follow this procedure, but she is gone and Sessions is in charge.

Another part of the guidelines restores the Secure Communities Program, allowing ICE to get help from local law enforcement for detaining and deporting immigrants, making these officials de facto immigration agents. It also terminates the Priority Enforcement Program that prioritized serious crimes for deportation and asked for leniency for immigrants with longstanding ties to the United States.

DHS plans to hire 10,000 or more additional agents, expand the number of detention facilities, and create an ICE office to help families of those killed by undocumented workers. DDT has not identified the source of billions of dollars required for these guidelines. Undocumented immigrants will have their crimes publicized, and they will be stripped of privacy protections. Although Dreamers, who were brought to the United States as young children, are not to be targeted unless they commit crimes, ICE agents have been violating this order.

Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the new guidelines show that “the No. 1 priority is that people who pose a threat to our country are immediately dealt with.” Yet crime is lower among immigrants than native-born people of the United States.

Lawyers and advocates for immigrants said the new policies could still be challenged in court, and some courts in states such as Illinois, Oregon, and Pennsylvania are not holding immigrants for up to 48 hours beyond the scheduled release from detention. Since at least 1886, courts have used the 14th Amendment to give some constitutional equality and fair treatment to non-citizens. Many states and cities are not using law enforcement workers to identify undocumented immigrants, a federal responsibility.

Two former Senate aides for Sessions drafted the plan with no input from career DHS policy staffers. Much of it came from a 1996 law disregarded as either unenforceable or absurd, including the part that returns people “to the foreign contiguous territory from which they arrived.” The memo states that the U.S. can save money that way. Nothing was said about the security problems along the border as undocumented immigrants are pushed back and forth.

DDT said that he would send back only criminals, but the redefinition of crime includes everyone in the nation who came in without a proper visa or overstayed a visit. The idea to hire 10,000 new agents overlooks the fact that the U.S. can’t fill the existing positions. Sixty percent of applicants to the Border Patrol fail the mandated polygraph, and those who are hired aren’t sent into the field for 18 months. As for using existing law enforcement officials, police departments in the largest cities don’t participate because of their belief that it erodes the trust between officers and the communities that they are protecting.

Beyond the destruction of families and lives, the new guidelines will erase much of the labor pool for farm workers, especially in the West and Southwest. About 57 percent of the nation’s entire agricultural workforce is undocumented. Other industries—meatpacking, building, healthcare, restaurant and retail service, for example—are dependent on immigrant labor. Immigrants comprise 40 percent of Wisconsin’s dairy industry workers and almost one in three U.S. farming and fishing workers is from Mexico. The 8 million undocumented immigrants who are employed comprise over five percent of all workers and are clustered in low-wage industries, frequently making under minimum wage.

Alabama has already experienced the devastation from fewer undocumented immigrants after Gov. Robert Bentley, now on the verge of impeachment, signed a law causing these workers to flee the state. Farmers had to plant less because their crops had rotted in the field in the previous year. Georgia did the same thing, and farmers lost 40 percent of their workers along with $140 million worth of crops in just the first year. Farmers tried to hire local workers, but they couldn’t even last a day. Prisoners were sent out to pick crops, but they couldn’t endure the work. Even with visas for farm workers, farmers have had to watch their crops rot because of bureaucratic difficulties.

DDT’s plan could cost the economy $5 trillion in ten years—that’s $500 billion a year—with unauthorized workers contributing about 3 percent of private-sector gross domestic product.

As the graph in this article shows, no state supports DDT’s deportation plan, even if a majority of their voters supported DDT in the election. Let’s just hope that they remember what DDT is doing in the 2018 election.

DDT’s racist plan concentrates on Hispanics, who comprise fewer than half the number of undocumented immigrants, and stereotypes all of them as criminals. The plan shreds lives, families, communities, and businesses; it is an action that touches everyone in the nation in some way–physically, emotionally, and financially.

As usual, DDT controls people with unsubstantiated fears. He loves creating chaos, and the nation is allowing him to play with the country as he would with his other toys. As usual, he controls people with unsubstantiated fears.

 

November 5, 2016

FBI Needs to Investigate Trump

The supposedly wealthy, jobs guy, Donald Trump, has been found to violate his employees’ federal labor rights by illegally refusing to bargain with his 500+ workers at the Last Vegas Trump International Hotel, according to the National Labor Relations Board. The board has ordered Trump to post notices in the hotel to admit the violation as well as immediately bargain a contract with them. He has actually broken the law while he incites his crowds regarding calls to jail Hillary Clinton—when she hasn’t violated any laws.

Yet the media continues to concentrate on the non-story of Clinton’s email, although Fox network’s  Bret Baier found himself having to make a correction on his “reporting.” After he falsely reported that investigators had determined Clinton’s private email server was hacked “by five foreign intelligence agencies,” leading to an indictment after the election, Baier admitted that “there is no evidence” for his statements. That didn’t stop Trump from constantly repeating these lies on the campaign trail.

No one has any evidence that Clinton’s emails were in any way illegal, but Clinton-hating—white, male, and conservative—FBI agents are rigging the election by spreading false information. The agents leaked so much information to the Trump campaign that the feckless FBI director, James Comey felt compelled to release information a week ago about searching for emails on Anthony Weiner’s computer—emails that were neither sent by nor sent to Clinton.

Two days before Comey sent a damning letter to members of the Congress about the emails, Trump surrogate Rudy Giuliani bragged about knowing a “big surprise” and then crowed about his knowledge of a revolution inside the FBI that he had learned from active agents. Yesterday, Giuliani said that he knew about the release of information before knowledge because public; today he backed down and denied that FBI agents told him about reviewing newly discovered emails before Comey made the information public. Reps. Elijah Cummings (MD-D) and John Conyers, Jr. (MI-D), the ranking members of the House Oversight and Judiciary committees, have called on the Inspector General of the Justice Department to investigate “the source of multiple unauthorized—and often inaccurate—leaks from within the FBI to benefit the presidential campaign of Donald Trump.”

Giuliani is heavily linked to the FBI’s New York City office with his law firm’s ongoing business, concerning 13,000 agents, and the Trump campaign has an open pipeline with the New York City FBI bureau. FBI agents leaking information break their oaths of office, and intentionally interfering with elections violate the federal Hatch Act. Their actions are bringing up memories of Edgar J. Hoover, the first FBI director, who kept extensive files on thousands of people and blackmailed to get his way.

Trump’s super-PAC “Make America Number 1,” financed by Robert Mercer and his daughter Rebekah, also paid Giuliani hundreds of thousands of dollars in the past year. Trump’s campaign leader Kellyanne Conway headed up the super-PAC and was replaced by David Bossie, head of Citizens United before he was put on Trump’s campaign. Breitbart owners, Robert and Rebehak Mercer, moved former head Steve Bannon to Trump’s campaign. leading part of the super-PAC. In addition, the Mercers funds the Bannon-led non-profit Government Accountability Institute and the video producer “Glittering Steel, a front for Bannon. GAI’s president, Peter Schweizer, wrote the smear-filled book, Clinton Cash, that FBI agents used for documentation in its Clinton investigation. Even Schweizer, the author, admits that he has no proof for many of his claims. “Follow the money” shows that the Mercers control both Trump and many FBI agents, using their billions to control the upcoming presidential election.

Their opposition to Clinton is keeping FBI agents mum about an investigation into Trump’s connection on a private server with the largest private commercial bank in Russia. Computer scientists have been following this secretive connection since last July, but the connection disappeared hours after the New York Times asked Alpha Bank about the communication. Within four days, the Trump Organization used a new host name for communication to the same private server. Although scientists were not able to obtain emails, they noted that the conversations paralleled political occurrences in the U.S., with peaks during the two conventions.

In the lengthy Newsweek cover story, Kurt Eichenwald trailed Trump’s destruction of business documents and emails over the past four decades during lawsuits. For example, investors lost a fortune in 2011 when Trump claimed that he had no liability insurance for a failed project in Florida only to have a lawyer reveal two years later that he had a $5 million policy. This is just one of thousands of times when Trump cheated people through his destruction of records. He also destroyed documents when he was the person suing, for example a suit against Cordish Cos., regarding two Native American casinos in 2000.

How crazy is this election getting? In 2000, Ralph Nadar said he preferred George W. Bush to Al Gore. The past 16 years shows where that preference led the nation. Now Jill Stein, Green Party candidate, supports Donald Trump—who thinks that climate change is a hoax from China—to Hillary Clinton. Greens are also defending Stein for her investments in palm oil plantations, the biggest cause of deforestation in the world.

On the other hand, major conservative pundits have wholeheartedly rejected Trump. Charles Krauthammer writes: “[As] final evidence of how bad are our choices in 2016, Trump’s liabilities, especially on foreign policy, outweigh hers.” He continues to discuss the dangers of Russia, China, and Iran seeing a Trump presidency as a way  “to achieve regional dominance and diminish, if not expel, American influence.”

Former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson: “Most options are better than Clinton. But not all. And not this. The GOP has largely accommodated itself to a candidate with no respect for, or knowledge of, the constitutional order… Those who are complicit have adopted a particularly dangerous form of power-loving hypocrisy. It is almost beyond belief that Americans should bless and normalize Trump’s appeal. Normalize vindictiveness and prejudice. Normalize conspiracy theories and the abandonment of reason. Normalize every shouted epithet, every cruel ethnic and religious stereotype, every act of bullying in the cause of American ‘greatness.’”

David Frum, former speech writer for George W. Bush, voted for Hillary Clinton and explained:

“To vote for Trump as a protest against Clinton’s faults would be like amputating a leg because of a sliver in the toe; cutting one’s throat to lower one’s blood pressure.”

Peggy Noonan defined the GOP problem in her column for the Wall Street Journal: “The split in the party happened in the past 15 years. When you give a party two unwon wars, one a true foreign-policy catastrophe, and a great recession, it will begin to break because its members lose confidence in its leaders. When the top of the party believes in things that the bottom of the party doesn’t want (on immigration, entitlements and trade), things will break further. The bottom will begin to feel the top no longer cares about it. That will end their loyalty. Mr. Trump’s Republican foes are wrong in thinking his followers are just sticking with the party. They’re not, they’ve broken from the party.” Yet Republicans think that re-electing a GOP president and Congress will save them.

Trump hates “illegal aliens,” but it’s highly possible that his wife is one. He denied that Melania Trump came to the U.S. on a tourist visa but then worked as a professional model. Documentation has appeared that he lied about Melania Trump’s illegal status. Yet Trump supporters love their candidate in spite—or because—of his lying and illegal activities while they find Clinton, the most truthful of all this year’s candidates—to be “untrustworthy.”

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