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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Open MIc


46 comments:

James said...

Trump’s Budget Hits His Own Voters Hardest

“Donald Trump, whose populist message and promises to help American workers propelled him to the White House, is set to issue a budget proposal on Tuesday that instead takes aim at the social safety net on which many of his supporters rely,” Politico reports.

“Rather than breaking with Washington precedent, Trump’s spending blueprint follows established conservative orthodoxy, cutting taxes on the wealthy, boosting defense spending and taking a hatchet to programs for the poor and disabled – potentially hurting many of the rural and low-income Americans that voted him into office.”
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Not exactly the workers and farmers s paradise we were promised.

James said...

“The White House does not confirm or deny unsubstantiated claims based on illegal leaks from anonymous individuals,” a White House spokesman said. “The president will continue to focus on his agenda that he was elected to pursue by the American people.”

One might wish he would do so legally.

rrb said...

instead takes aim at the social safety net on which many of his supporters rely,” Politico reports.
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“There’s a certain philosophy wrapped up in the budget and that is — we are no longer going to measure compassion by the number of programs or the number of people on those programs,” White House Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, one of the budget’s chief architects, told reporters on Monday. “We’re not going to measure our success by how much money we spend, but by how many people we actually help.”

what a pleasant surprise. a government that measures success by actual results instead of feel-good, vote-buying intentions.

"Mulvaney said the budget does not touch “mainline” or “core” Social Security, but it does cut Social Security’s disability insurance."

“We need folks to work. We need people to go to work. If you’re on food stamps, and you're able-bodied, we need you to go to work. If you’re on disability insurance and you're not supposed to be, we need you to work,” he added. “There’s a dignity to work, and there’s a necessity to work.”

bravo!

i happen to know of a couple of able-bodied parasites who have "retired" at a young age on SSDI. they doctor shopped until they found someone to fill out the paperwork.

that's fraud, and it needs to stop.

and yes, trump's supporters voted for exactly that.


james said...

“The problem wasn’t so much asking them to issue statements, it was asking them to issue false statements about an ongoing investigation,” a former senior intelligence official said of the request to Coats.

Got that, Ch?

james said...

HE'S GOOD AT BLUSTER; NOT SO GOOD AT RESULTS

Trump’s Budget Defies Logic

Larry Summers: “Details of President Trump’s first budget have now been released. Much can and will be said about the dire social consequences of what is in it and the ludicrously optimistic economic assumptions it embodies.  My observation is that there appears to be a logical error of the kind that would justify failing a student in an introductory economics course.

“Apparently, the budget forecasts that U.S. economic growth will rise to 3.0 percent because of the administration’s policies — largely its tax cuts and perhaps also its regulatory policies.  Fair enough if you believe in tooth fairies and ludicrous supply-side economics.

“Then the administration asserts that it will propose revenue neutral tax cuts with the revenue neutrality coming in part because the tax cuts stimulate growth! This is an elementary double count.  You can’t use the growth benefits of tax cuts once to justify an optimistic baseline and then again to claim that the tax cuts do not cost revenue. At least you cannot do so in a world of logic.”

Vox: Trump’s budget relies on magic economic growth.

wphamilton said...

Why isn't a 3% economic growth reasonable? It's a modest goal, and supply-side economics are valid within certain constraints.

Tax cuts that stimulate revenue growth can be revenue neutral. This whole argument fails because it relies mainly on labeling the budget as a fantasy, ludicrous and illogical, without logically supporting any of that.

Roger Amick said...

Ongoing testimony today by the former CIA director stated "If the press stories are accurate, the Presidential has violated intelligence protocol". He also said that if the press reports are accurate, he doesn't know that coalition isn't clear, but the evidence leads to a possibility of coalition. And if true, he won't say directly that it is impeachable, but it could very well be possible.

"Not clear of coalition, but..

The impeachment drums are beating the opening rhythm of "Impeachment Rocks The President" He said that he violated intelligence protocol, again.

The drums are going. The base guitar is starting to roll. These Dreams Are Coming.

wphamilton said...

Roger, as far as impeachment, in this case doesn't it all boil down to whether Trump rendered aid to Russia in exchange for help in the election? Or provably conspired to do so. That's going to be a tough case to make, no matter what the evidence. I have no crystal ball, but the only way I see that playing out is IF there is enough solid evidence to make it appear likely that Trump did, then it's more plausible that Trump conspired to obstruct justice which would be a more feasible case against him.

I don't think that there can be a rush to impeachment either way, but it would sink the more wacky parts of his agenda as Republicans shy away from association with it all. And if it goes on long enough, with more blunders, it could lead to Democratic gains in Congress.

C.H. Truth said...

Roger, as far as impeachment, in this case doesn't it all boil down to whether Trump rendered aid to Russia in exchange for help in the election? Or provably conspired to do so.

I think that's the "second step".

The first step is moving beyond the "consensus" that it was Russian agents who hacked the DNC/Clinton emails... and showing that there is actual provable evidence that they did.

Otherwise, you are relying on a "best guess" to form the foundation of your investigation. While that may hold up as an explanation to the hacking of the DNC/Clinton emails for counterintelligence... it doesn't hold up for a criminal probe.

Roger Amick said...

wp

Tax cuts that stimulate revenue growth can be revenue neutral. This whole argument fails because it relies mainly on labeling the budget as a fantasy, ludicrous and illogical, without logically supporting any of that.

Trickle Down lead to huge deficits in the past.



wphamilton said...

Suppose Trump did conspire with Russian agents, promising advantageous policy or some other "Trump deal" in exchange for Russian interference in the election. Suppose further that the Russians did absolutely nothing, as you suggest. It would still be a bribe, aiding the enemy, a high crime.

So no, it isn't absolutely necessary to provide provable evidence that the Russians hacked the DNC. It isn't necessary to provide any evidence at all of active Russian cyber-ops. That would make it a slam dunk, but it isn't required.

Even if you can't prove that Trump even colluded with them, whether or not the Russians hacked the DNC, if the evidence shows that it's even likely but not provable, that in itself becomes the foundation for showing obstruction. You'd need very solid, provable evidence of the actual obstruction, given this highly partisan Republican Congress, but *proving* Russian hacking is not a requirement.

wphamilton said...

Trickle Down lead to huge deficits in the past.

When nothing to speak of actually trickled down. Middle class tax cuts have a record of success in at least short-term stimulus.

James said...

There are Republicans who secretly and not so secretly wish that something decisively criminal enough would come along to get the Trump albatross out of office and thus off of the GOP's neck.

Roger Amick said...

CH, I'm aware of that. But, I was up for the first time hour of Joe. The regular contributors, and Joe himself, who has been very measurable, was all over it. I have been watching the former CIA head, has said that if the press if correct, it's a serious violation of the protocols, and danced around impeachment, but..

C.H. Truth said...

So no, it isn't absolutely necessary to provide provable evidence that the Russians hacked the DNC. It isn't necessary to provide any evidence at all of active Russian cyber-ops.

Then what is the crime?

As many legal scholars have suggested... "collusion" to win an election is not a crime in and of itself. You have to be "colluding" to break the law.

While it may be illegal for foreign entities to actively participate in an election (they cannot purchase ads or donate to candidates)... you cannot charge a foreigner for taking sides, making public statements, or suggesting that it would better for relations if so and so won over so and so.

Otherwise, the entire European Union would be guilty of colluding to try to help Democrats win in almost every election.

Seems a little like a double standard here. It's okay for every other world leader to openly suggest that they would prefer Clinton (generally because they would prefer her policies), but it's suddenly a crime if Putin suggests that he would prefer Trump (even though he never did).

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I think the key word you used is "interference". I am guessing this is slight semantic separation from "influence" (which nearly every world leader tries to do).

But if that "interference" does not rise to behavior that is "criminal" - how is it different than any other world leader preferring one candidate because they believe the policies of that candidate would help their country... and doing their best to influence the election?

They do it all the time, by just announcing a preference. How can that possibly be seen as a crime being committed by the "American" candidate.

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I find it highly strange that we are trying to create a criminal case without actually suggesting any specific crimes were broken?

Loretta Russo said...

Make NO mistake, Putin set out to disrupt our election and cause chaos - mission accomplished.

Liberals are evil. Period


"Regime Change by Any Other Name?"

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/447864/trump-critics-left-right-want-him-removed?utm_source=social&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=hanson&utm_content=regime-change

C.H. Truth said...

Roger

Protocol is not law. It's generally an accepted code of procedure within a some group or organization of people.

Which is to say that Donald Trump is going about this whole Presidency thing in a manner that people within the federal government are not used to or not comfortable with.

That is hardly illegal... and quite frankly, in many ways it's exactly what should have been expected of him.


To some degree, I wonder out loud who is in the wrong and who is in the right.

My group just got a new manager. If he were to come to me and request that I do something that was "generally not the way we are used to doing it" would I be right or wrong to defy him because it's not what I am used to... or because I find it inappropriate?

Maybe... but I better have a pretty good reason to defy my immediate supervisor if I want to continue to be employed.

wphamilton said...

Then what is the crime?

The crime in that case might be obstruction, bribery, aiding the enemy. In a very tangible sense, what the Russians are guilty of doesn't determine what Trump is guilty of. It would help prove a case, but that's it.

This insistence on *proving" that the Russians are guilty of some specific crime is a red herring. I can't imagine the notion gaining much traction legally, or even politically.

opie said...

Anonymous wphamilton said...
Why isn't a 3% economic growth reasonable?

Modest yes, but when was the last time we had 3% growth.. Second question, what is this year growth progged to be? How long do tax cuts take to trickle down and create growth???? The inertia required to move the economy to that level is massive and I don't give it lots of hope with the massive cuts in medicare which will deny the economy billions of dollars that are multipliers in the economic engine.

C.H. Truth said...

WP...

Obstruction seems to be a different actual crime to me... and I guess where you and I differ is that you seem to believe that proving obstruction is somehow a matter of proving a motive to do so... than proving the actual obstruction. Unless I am reading you wrong, you believe that a whole lot of legal actions can be declared illegal if you can prove that there is a motive that could explain them as something else. I think that's a tough sell.

Bribery would be difficult to prove if you are suggesting that it's illegal for any politician to hold political policy positions that would help another country... if it can be shown that leaders of that country made any public statements or any sort of attempts to show a preference for that candidate in an election. It would make almost any policy promise prone to attempts to associate them with a 'quid pro quo' with a foreign entity. Would President Obama (for instance) have been breaking the law by promising big environmental concessions from American, knowing it would bring him support from foreign leaders? I simply cannot believe it's plausible to make the use of "policy promises" as a criminal "bribe" if it garners the support of foreign leaders.

Aiding an enemy is a non-starter as we are not at war with Russia and there are currently no sort of EO or laws at this point prohibiting contact, business dealings, travel, or anything with Russia. They would not be (officially or legally) considered an enemy.

rrb said...

Otherwise, you are relying on a "best guess" to form the foundation of your investigation. While that may hold up as an explanation to the hacking of the DNC/Clinton emails for counterintelligence... it doesn't hold up for a criminal probe.
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don't be so sure. they nailed scooter libby for absolutely nothing. and that's what imbeciles like roger are banking on this time. they want this investigation to drag on forever until it can be concluded by charging trump with the flimsiest of charges. of course, in order for their scheme to succeed this needs to drag out long enough to "influence" (ironic, no?) the 2018 midterms and flip the house back to the donks.

once again when it comes to roger you are up against the force of invincible ignorance.

rrb said...

Unless I am reading you wrong, you believe that a whole lot of legal actions can be declared illegal if you can prove that there is a motive that could explain them as something else. I think that's a tough sell.
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no lessor legal lights than jon turley and alan dershowitz have declared this the thinnest of thin gruel.

and proving a motive is essentially proving intent, no?

if trump did not INTEND to "obstruct justice" then i think the comey/clinton precedent kicks in.

C.H. Truth said...

Rat

Call me crazy... but the President asking intelligence officials to release official statements about their investigative findings, and being upset with Comey dragging on an investigation while being on television more often than a Kardashian...

Looks more like the actions of an innocent person trying to clear his name, than a guilty person trying to obstruct justice.

opie said...

C.H. Truth said...
Rat

"Call me crazy" with statements like this "and being upset with Comey dragging on an investigation while being on television more often than a Kardashian" you are crazy.

Yes, CH, the dark side won what was left of your republican addled brain believing trump was trying to "just" clear his name.....Maybe he should also ask for immunity...LOL!!! ...

opie said...

more fake news from a reliable source, that CH will deny it is sufficient to warrant further scrutiny...

The former CIA chief also told the House intelligence committee that he had become so concerned about Russian interference — and contacts between Americans "involved" with the Trump campaign and the Russians — that he convened a group of officials from the CIA, FBI and National Security Agency in late July to focus exclusively on the issue.

Dayum....can't imagine any collision amongst friends like this. Silly republicon's denying anything happened in spite of the mounting evidence otherwise.

wphamilton said...

WP...

Obstruction seems to be a different actual crime to me... and I guess where you and I differ is that you seem to believe that proving obstruction is somehow a matter of proving a motive to do so...


Good Lord. I've stressed in every single post that I addressed on the subject, that there will have to be solid proof of obstruction. Proven, deliberate actions. And that the impact of the Russian investigations is most likely to show motives. Every time, specifically so you could NOT misrepresent me like this. Not with any credibility, for anyone reading your blog.

Where you get these ideas is beyond me.

C.H. Truth said...

that he convened a group of officials from the CIA, FBI and National Security Agency in late July to focus exclusively on the issue.

Well then... they must have a ton of actual "EVIDENCE" - huh?


Evidence



Loretta Russo said...

If Russia interferred in the election they did it under Brennan's watch.

What is his excuse for that?

Blame it on Trump.

C.H. Truth said...

I've stressed in every single post that I addressed on the subject, that there will have to be solid proof of obstruction.

Doesn't appear that way to me, WP...

You've specifically argued the irrelevance of the fact that nobody within the FBI has suggested that there has been any obstruction or interference... which seems to me a dead giveaway that you don't see "proof of obstruction" to be relevant.

Instead you are literally looking at what you might see as an "intent" to obstruct being the crime, even if those actions didn't actually "obstruct" anything.

When Hillary Clinton deleted 30,000 emails and wiped her server after it was subpoenaed... that was a tangible obstruction of the FBI's ability to investigate her email server.

Donald Trump telling Comey that he "hopes he can let it go" didn't actually "obstruct" anything... as Comey obviously didn't let it go and the investigation went forward without any obstruction. Donald Trump asking two other intelligence directors to make a report didn't literally obstruct anything either.

Those would be examples of what you might describe as "intent" - which is how you see them building the case...

Roger Amick said...

So, now we have defined cooperation between Russia and the President. That was the last thing he needed, before he would entertain the possibility of impeachment. But now I see that "Lock her up" movement has the Coldheartedtruth as the theme. Hypocrisy squared!

KD, Right move at the Right TIme said...

Raising 16.6 Billion
Trump wants to sell half of emergency US oil reserve "

That is an idea that time has come, it is not longer needed.

Loretta Russo said...

"So, now we have defined cooperation between Russia and the President. "

No we don't.

KD, CA is on the march said...

The CA movement away from ObamaCare.

Well I say do it, with a price tag of 400 Billion for the state of CA to move off of ObamaCare and onto single payer, funded by higher taxes on all that earn an income. Looks like an addition 15 % of all wages is all it is going to take.

I say pass it and soon.

KD, poor stupid broke and broken alky said...

Ette, on Nov 9th at about 0345 am, after Hillary Lost, Alky let us know that he was on Medicaid.

He was so concerned about it , he addressed that concern to WP. They both were really feeling blue over the loss of Hillary to Trump.

opie said...

Doesn't appear that way to me, WP...

Just like GW models are all wrong to you CH and man is not altering the climate.

opie said...

Howdy Gowdy should recuse himself for his abject stupidity...


But it was under the questioning of the committee members, particularly under the questions of the committee's majority members, that Brennan discreetly released several kitties from the burlap. For example, Trey Gowdy, the lopheaded Javert of the endless Benghazi investigations, asked Brennan whether he had seen evidence of "collusion" between the Trump campaign and the Russians. This allowed Brennan to say that he saw evidence that "in my mind raised questions of whether it was collusion" and that he'd seen enough to encourage the FBI to keep "pulling threads" on that particular issue.

Unlike CH, Brennan understands why investigation should continue. Everything donnie does is self serving and looking out for his ego rather than the US. He is a small, vain, person who is not used to getting anything but his own way. Time for donnie to grow up.

KD, wind changed direction so did opinions of all liberals said...

No time, you and your ilk continue to get louder on filing Impeachment, what date will your team actually do it?

Feckless Five of CHT = Opium, ALky, WP, notsoIndy, Jane

Funny little people - Trump is not your president, right?

KD, ALky was so upset the truth slipped out said...

Roger Amick said...
wp, our incomes are defined benefit for life incomes. So no problem.

Unless Trump destroys Medcade. She has to hold onto Minneapolis, Nevada, Michigan. a slight chance. She also has to hold PA and Michigan and Wisconsin.

Panama?

November 8, 2016 at 10:55 PM"


you said it, you depend on Medicaid ,,,, have you booked your move to Panama yet?

KD, This is so funny said...

Not exactly the workers and farmers s paradise we were promised."JANE

first off , stop crying.

Only Hillary promised the Feckless 5 the sickle and hammer economy.


KD, Trump said...

Here is the complete list of average annual real GDP growth by postwar president (in descending order):

Johnson (1964-68), 5.3%
Kennedy (1961-63), 4.3%
Clinton (1993-2000), 3.9%
Reagan (1981-88), 3.5%
Carter (1977-80), 3.3%
Eisenhower (1953-60), 3.0%
(Post-WWII average: 2.9%)
Nixon (1969-74), 2.8%
Ford (1975-76), 2.6%
G. H. W. Bush (1989-92), 2.3%
G. W. Bush (2001-08), 2.1%
Truman (1946-52), 1.7%
Obama (2009-15), 1.5%


So over the next 8 years all Trump has to do is beat the lost years record of 1.5 % average.

Well, that is done and done.

James said...

Rev, I wanted to share with you a statement I released to the press this morning in respose to President Trump's speech today in Jerusalem:
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J Street was encouraged that in his speech in Jerusalem today and throughout his trip to the Middle East, President Trump put resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian and Israeli-Arab conflicts back at the top of the regional agenda.

The president rightly emphasized to Israelis the long-term benefits of regional cooperation and peace and to the Palestinians the need to confront violence and incitement.

What was missing throughout the trip and in the speech, however, was a clear re-affirmation of longstanding bipartisan US policy that the two-state solution is the only viable way to resolve this conflict, that both sides need to make tough choices and that they must stop taking steps that move the conflict further from resolution.

Broad normalization with Arab states will not take place before or in the absence of the emergence of a Palestinian state. Confusion as to whether the United States still seeks two states for two peoples only feeds the far right’s dream that lasting security and economic partnership with Israel's Arab neighbors can be accomplished while permanently continuing the occupation.

Now that the trip is over, we will be looking for substantive actions to back up the president's stated commitment to "achieving the ultimate deal."

All the best,

Jeremy

wphamilton said...

Oh come on CH. In this very thread I wrote:

"You'd need very solid, provable evidence of the actual obstruction, given this highly partisan Republican Congress, but *proving* Russian hacking is not a requirement."

so how can it possibly be true that "it doesn't appear that way" to you, that I've stressed that there needs to be proven evidence of obstruction? It's not possible for me to write it more clearly and directly than that.

C.H. Truth said...

Well then, WP... we are in agreement.

From what we know for sure, and even including unsubstantiated claims leaked to the media... it would be a long way from here to there if you are looking for "provable evidence of actual obstruction".

_______

But what the hell difference does it make? Democrats wanted him impeached before he took office. They wouldn't need proof of anything to impeach him. All they may need would be a simple majority in the House and a complete lockstep vote...

Although they would never get 67 members of the Senate without the sort of "solid provable evidence of actual obstruction" that would convince partisan Republicans to convict him.

Commonsense said...

Another Democratic Senator Says There's Not Enough Evidence To Point To Russian Collusion

Also, former CIA Director John Brennan told Congress yesterday that the intelligence community has not been pressured to drop the Flynn investigation. To rehash, McCaskill’s colleague, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) also said this month—twice—that there is no evidence of Russian collusion. The Senate and House Intelligence Community have found nothing either. Mr. Brennan did say that Russia had a concerted interference program, which isn’t unusual (we’ve interfered in elections before), but hacking the election didn’t occur. No vote tallies were tampered with, though I know a lot of Democrats thinks that’s what happened. Also, Brennan added that interactions with the Russians doesn’t mean that’s evidence of collusion, despite the new narrative peddled by some on the Left, which is that any meeting with the Russians is inappropriate.

rrb said...

But what the hell difference does it make? Democrats wanted him impeached before he took office.
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for the record, democrats began their impeachment talk about 5 minutes after trump declared his candidacy.

Commonsense said...

Interesting and of course, scientific.

Study: climate of Los Angeles has been stable for 50,000 years

From the AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY and the “no ice ages here” department.

Fossil beetles suggest that LA climate has been relatively stable for 50,000 years
New radiocarbon dating of La Brea Tar Pits beetles indicates that Southern California’s Paleoclimate was very similar to today

Research based on more than 180 fossil insects preserved in the La Brea Tar Pits of Los Angeles indicate that the climate in what is now southern California has been relatively stable over the past 50,000 years.

The La Brea Tar Pits, which form one of the world’s richest Ice Age fossil sites, is famous for specimens of saber-toothed cats, mammoths, and giant sloths, but their insect collection is even larger and offers a relatively untapped treasure trove of information. The new study, published today in the journal Quaternary Science Reviews, is based on an analysis of seven species of beetles and offers the most robust environmental analysis for southern California to date.