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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 6/20/19

The High Cost of the Trump Presidency

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Radical Democrat opponents are driven by hatred, prejudice, and rage. They want to destroy you and they want to destroy our country, as we know it."

- Donald Trump

In Donald Trump's eyes, he has accomplished "more than any other president has in the first two and a half years of a presidency". In many areas, he can indeed cite significant accomplishments: The national debt? Higher than it has ever been. Declining air quality? "More than four in 10 Americans, approximately 43.3 percent of the population, [now] live in counties that have monitored unhealthy ozone and/or particle pollution." Reduced access to health insurance? After the uninsured rate declined significantly under Obamacare, Gallup found that "the number of Americans without health insurance has increased by 7 million" since Trumpcare has been implemented. Border security? After Trump cut aid to countries in Central America, "border apprehensions for 2019 will reach the highest level since 2006 and double the number seen in 2018." Like the businesses that Trump drove into bankruptcy, America has seen a significant impact on its well being from his leadership.

However, these accomplishments pale in comparison to Trump's crowning achievement - deepening the chasm between red and blue America. Despite the fact that he was elected with a minority of the electorate, this president has done little to reach out to those beyond his base. Unlike his predecessor, he has made no attempt to compromise with the opposition party. He has yet to display his self-described mastery of the "Art of the Deal." Even acting presidential has eluded him. Instead of engaging in debate, he has childishly attacked anyone who has dared to question his actions or his policies, whether this criticism comes from a Republican Congressman, John McCain, the press, or the Democratic party.
If Trump's 2020 campaign kickoff event is any indication, the rhetoric is only going to get worse as the next election approaches. Knowing that 52% of Republicans support Medicare For All, the headline policy initiative of his opponents, Trump has avoided arguments based on facts and data. Instead, he has played on the emotions of hatred and fear.

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Hillary Clinton is not a candidate this time around, but she was still the foil throughout his speech on Tuesday, as he mostly ignored his current opponents. This was probably no accident as current polls show that many of them are beating him in the state where he delivered the speech.

Throwing red meat to his cult-like following, Trump made sure to paint his opponents with broad brushes meant to instill a sense of danger. To quote him, "The swamp is fighting back so viciously and violently". His administration is "under siege". The "patriotic movement" he leads "has been under assault from the very first day."

This is from the same president who looked the other way while the MAGA Bomber sent explosive devices to those on his enemies list. The one who declared that there were "fine" people in a crowd gathered to engage in hero worship of traitors to our country who took up arms to protect the institution of slavery. This is the "leader" who cannot admit he made a mistake when he called for the death penalty to be used against men of color who were later proven to be innocent.

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Of course, Trump's fans ate it up. Conspiracy theorists in Q shirts chanted "lock her up" as their Dear Leader basked in their adoration. The Proud Boys, a white supremacist group, had to be stopped by the police from disrupting a protest against the President. They showed up in "tactical gear to protect Trump fans from liberals."

This is not normal. No political party in a democracy should be claiming a monopoly on patriotism. Violent rhetoric has no place in a democratic election. Violent political groups should be universally condemned. People on both sides of the political fence need to step up and defend against our country's descent into fascism.

Republicans have already clearly shown that they are willing to sell the soul of their party for the short term gains of a Trump presidency. Are they also willing to sacrifice their country?
________________________________

Carl Petersen is a parent and special education advocate, elected member of the Northridge East Neighborhood Council and was a Green Party candidate in LAUSD's District 2 School Board race. During the campaign, he was endorsed by Network for Public Education (NPE) Action and Dr. Diane Ravitch called him a "strong supporter of public schools." His past blogs can be found at www.ChangeTheLAUSD.com. Opinions are his own.

 

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Carl Petersen is a father of five, including two daughters who are on the autism spectrum. His involvement in education issues began when the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) refused to provide services that his daughters' teachers (more...)
 

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911TRUTH

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trump will be re-elected.

I say that because he will do literally anything to win. Anything.

The spineless Demo-Republicrats won't. They will bring a water pistol to a nuclear war.

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 20, 2019 at 5:19:01 PM

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Susan Lee Schwartz

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Welcome to Trump's Corrupt State -- the Star Wars cantina of world politics

"The administration and the Republican party are nests of lobbyists and con artists who make Greedo look like a saint

Trump has been ramping up his "Deep State" rhetoric again. He's back to blaming a cabal of bureaucrats, FBI and CIA agents, Democrats and "enemies of the people" in the mainstream media for conspiring to remove him from office, in order to allow the denizens of foreign "shitholes " to overrun America.

But with each passing day it's becoming clearer that the real threat to America isn't Trump's Deep State. It's Trump's own Corrupt State.

Not since the sordid administration of Warren G Harding have as many grifters, crooks and cronies occupied high positions in Washington.

Trump has installed a Star Wars cantina of former lobbyists and con artists, including several whose exploits have already forced them to resign, such as Scott Pruitt, Ryan Zinke, Tom Price and Michael Flynn. Many others remain.

When he was in Congress, the current White House acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, pocketed tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from payday lenders, then proposed loosening regulations on them. Mulvaney was also acting head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, of all things.

When he was Trump's special adviser on regulatory reform, the Wall Street billionaire Carl Icahn sought to gut the Environmental Protection Agency rule on ethanol credits, which was harming his oil refinery investments .

This week the Guardian reported that a real estate company partly owned by Trump son-in-law and foreign policy adviser Jared Kushner has raked in $90m from foreign investors since Kushner entered the White House, through a secret vehicle run by Goldman Sachs in the Cayman Islands. Kushner's stake is some $50m.

All this takes conflict of interest to a new level of shamelessness.

What are Republicans doing about it? Participating in it.

The secretary of transportation, Elaine Chao, who also happens to be the wife of the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, has approved $78m in grants for her husband's home state, Kentucky, including a highway improvement project twice rejected in the past. Chao has even appointed a special liaison to coordinate grants with McConnell's office. Did I say McConnell is up for re-election next year?

Under normal circumstances, news that a cabinet secretary is streamlining federal funding for her husband's pet projects would be a giant scandal. But in the age of Trump, ethics have gone out the window.

Since he was elected in November, congressman Greg Pence, who just happens to be the brother of Vice-President Mike Pence, has spent more than $7,600 of campaign funds on lodging at the Trump International Hotel in Washington. Federal election law forbids politicians from using campaigns dollars to cover housing costs.

Trump and his Republican enablers are magicians who distract us by shouting "look here!" at the paranoid fantasy of a Deep State, while creating a Corrupt State under our noses.

But it's not a party trick. It's the dirtiest trick of our time, enabled by the most corrupt party in living memory."


Wish I had written that but it's here.

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 20, 2019 at 6:42:53 PM

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Susan Lee Schwartz

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This current rise of angry populists , nationalists and tribalists was made possible because of the unintended consequences of information technology. it began with television, where disinformation has reached new heights, but it was the anarchy of cyberspace that was the death knell for truth. Yes, the haters have always been there, but this time, is unprecedented.

This new transformational era, of the internet has accelerated our experience of time. I fear for the survival of good people, as the meanest, mongrels push hatred and division, and outright lies. like all eras where something new changes everything down the road, enabled the liars to weaponize disinformation.

Cyber-space, where anarchy rules, followed by the ubiquitous screen, which addicted the people to unimagined degrees. Video game streamed theft and violence, and thus, when a madman streamed a live massacre, the world woke up to the UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES of information technology. Here are some salient quotes from the editorial in the NY Time: as authorities rushed to stop a gunman on a mass killing spree in New Zealand, engineers, programmers and content moderators around the globe were scrambling to keep the rampage from going viral. It didn't work.

I have posted this comment (below) before: but it belongs here, because this mongrel could not have such a following with out the internet....

I was born in 1941. I am writing about the unintended consequences of an era of transformation. Only with the perspective of time, often centuries, can we grasp the things that happen in the context of a change... like mankind giving up hunting to settle down in one place... and the rise of cities and states, and the need for. militaries.

The industrial revolution not only gave us machines, it gave us pollution and climate change.

The era of information technology gave us television, which was soon co-opted by the propagandists to sell us everything from soap to politicians, and pharmaceuticals. Here is but one link I collected on this topic Tackling the Internet's Central Villain: The Advertising Business

In the nineties, I taught media units in seventh grade, where we looked at what tv presented at the same time as we read the. newspapers. Even the 13 year old saw the way. info was slanted.

I read The Hidden Persuaders byVance Packard, in 1962, when I studied Media & Society. TV was young and the agencies that used human behavior and created the campaigns to influence people were new; the advertising 'mad-men' led the way to the subtle influences that sell everything from soap to politicians by using subliminal messages! Packard predicted that television -- which was was being studied my the psychologists, was this window into our homes which would sell us anything! And back them, the televisions were 12 inch black and white, and you had to get up to change a channel. Walter Cronkite was there, not Sean Hannity.

But we live in an age where disinformation has been weaponized. Information technology has presented the naked ape ape with a place of anarchy -- the internet, where anything goes, and anyone can find the open source materials to hack, did you read this piece published alongside yours ? Countries Want to Ban 'Weaponized' Social Media. What Would That Look Like?

"There is a rapid, dirty river of information coursing through us all day. If you're in the news business, or a consumer of the news business, your reaction to events has to be instant or it is outdated. If you're on social media, there are these swarming mobs who rise out of nowhere, leave people broken and do not stick around to perform the patient Kintsugi act of gluing them back together.

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 20, 2019 at 7:25:10 PM

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I agree he will most likely win because his advisors may start a new war.

Arm industry wants war. War is profitable not peace.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 21, 2019 at 3:31:55 AM

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All the more reason to think Tulsi click here. She is the only candidate who sees the bulls-eye, let alone take aim at it. And curiously enough, the ONLY candidate ignored by the MSM and utterly missed in polls.

P.S. No more "no more" Trump and living in fear. Por favor.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 21, 2019 at 11:01:10 AM

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She (Tulsi) is going to have to do a hell of a better job of getting her message out. She is at the bottom of the polls and is not on the radar of getting nominated. She also has the unenviable task of staying on the Federal payroll since her seat is also open this time around. I anticipate that she will drop out of the Prez race to concentrate on an election that she has a greater probability of winning.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 21, 2019 at 1:39:58 PM

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Never was the Samuel Johnson quote "patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels" more appropriate.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 21, 2019 at 12:36:59 PM

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tRump is the result of Obama fatigue, from Bu$h ineptness, but all are chosen for their continuing the agenda set out long ago, which will be the downfall of the USA and $. .valuewalk.com/2016/05/trumps-plan-destroy-dollar/

Submitted on Friday, Jun 21, 2019 at 1:02:15 PM

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The actual danger is ahead! He is thinking of running for another term ...!

Submitted on Friday, Jun 21, 2019 at 1:40:53 PM

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Of course that is what his supporters are counting on. All that the Democrats are offering are pie in the sky promises that are basically DOA with Congress. The infrastructure of America needs to be addressed before promising the wide ranging socialized society benefits that are being dangled in front of the Democrats.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 21, 2019 at 3:58:24 PM

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