Trump’s Tuesday Speech to Congress


The Democrats are planning to stage a horror show at the presidential address to a joint session of Congress.  They openly speak of; floor demonstrations complete with shaken fists, signs,  illegal immigrants in the gallery, tearful foreign travelers to the US meditating on their inconveniences.  It will be entertaining.

One must ask why Trump is doing this speech at all.  There is not a requirement in law or custom for this. 

IMO he seeks the confrontation in the belief that the Democrats will look foolish and disrespectful to his office.  There is also the possibility that he fears republican support for him is declining in Congress.  He needs that support to pass important legislation like the corporate income tax reduction.   A Democratic "riot" in the capitol might be helpful in rallying Republican support.

IMO his main interest is in staging a scene that will focus middle America on a need perceived by him and Bannon for a cultural revolution in the country.  That might work.  pl

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136 Responses to Trump’s Tuesday Speech to Congress

  1. Bill H says:

    This is the same Democratic Party that, after losing the White House and both houses of Congress, reelected both Minority Leaders in Congress, both of whom promptly said very specifically, “I don’t think we need to do anything differently.” Brilliant.
    Now they plan to throw a collective tantrum in the Congressional house, making themselves look like a bunch of five-year-olds. I cannot imagine how they think that this will make the Republicans look bad. This will delight the radical wing of their party, and will convince the rest of the country that they have become utterly irrelevant. I imagine it will send college students to their “safe spaces” in droves.

  2. Eric Newhill says:

    One hysterical tirade after another, the DNC and allies are pushing themselves further left and further into obscurity. As you note, they are becoming too crazy and “anti-American” for the typical middle of the road citizen to be comfortable associating with them. Trump has purposely been a catalyst for this movement since he announced his candidacy. It’s working!

  3. Morongobill says:

    Spot on. Perhaps it will galvanize the “silent majority” out of their slumber.

  4. Degringolade says:

    At the end of the day, Trump is a consummate showman. He is extraordinarily clever and knows that the diluted pablum that the left so enjoys is not fun for the popular audience and it does not keep eyes on him. So the tweets and the playing to the audience is all bent around keeping eyes on him. Going to the Hill and poking the pseudo-bears with a stick will just help him in this effort.
    I think that is the key to understanding his presidency. He draws the eyes and the loathing of his political opponents. He hogs the whole spotlight and draws the fire. All the while the folks down in the trenches will bust their butts seeing how much they can deconstruct while eyes are on the good Mr. Trump.
    I am one of the low-to-mid-level minions of the federal government. My peers in the belly of the beast have a pretty good idea of what is coming down the pike.
    Remember, along with freeing folks from regulation of a bureaucracy, you can also cripple a bureaucracy by adding more internal regulation to decrease its ability to accomplish the external mission. We are just now starting to see that at the VA.
    Nope, what Donald tweets about, and what meta-scale fights he picks with the hippies are just window-dressing. The real work is going to be down in the trenches and how much regulatory stripping can be done.
    I would posit that Donald is stirring up the shit to keep folks eyes off the prize, the sunsetting of the suspension of the debt ceiling. Granted, it is political drama and not especially a real thing, but that is the club that Donald will use when it comes time, but by stirring up the noise about other things, it keeps the opposition from noticing you moving out your rooks.
    Nope, I think that you are right about staging a scene casting the Democrats as a bunch of grown children having a tantrum. That will cripple the Dem’s ability to react to the partial unbuilding of the federal edifice.

  5. robt willmann says:

    I think that the analysis in the main posting above is correct. I am surprised that the Democrats are even thinking about a demonstration during the speech.
    Another aspect is that all the old war horses are gone, such as Robert Byrd, Bob Dole, and George Mitchell (he of the smiling stiletto in the ribs!). They were sticklers for decorum and would not have put up with any sort of demonstration, lurid or not, at a formal speech in Congress, regardless of which political party was involved. As a friend who spent a lot of time in Washington D.C. said, `nobody messed with Bobby Byrd’. Any smart aleck who tried to pull such a stunt in those days would find out the hard way about how internal dynamics and psychology operate in an organization such as Congress.
    The senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, is something of an old timer himself, but he does not have the intestinal fortitude of Byrd, Dole, or Mitchell. Nevertheless, he is big on decorum and I think will be outraged if there is any sort of demonstration during Trump’s speech.

  6. steve says:

    Democrats would be better off just not showing up at all rather than demonstrating. Trump could certainly be counting on his bad behavior to help his cause. I also suspect that this is about his manifesting his authoritarian side. It would not surprise me to see him make relatively frequent trips to Congress, well televised, to make it clear that he is in charge. Congress would do well, if it wants to retain its own influence, to minimize his appearances.

  7. Tyler says:

    Bannon’s speech at CPAC told me he (and by extension, Trump) realise that at this point we are “wrestling for the gun” in this country between the two sides. The Deploreables have the wolf by the ears now, but its kill or be killed at this point – the globalists will never allow another Trump, and what they will try to do to him will make the English freak out after Cromwell look measured by response.
    Trump is going to need all eight years to even begin undoing the administrative state and train a successor to carry on his work in order to prevent the current Cold Civil War from going hot if there is a change in power, and even then, I don’t know if that’s possible at this point. The Left in this country seems to be dead set on starting a color revolution/civil conflict based off invisible pretexts only seen to those steeped in the mysteries of their religion.
    Tuesday will give us a better idea of where this is all gonna go.

  8. Tyler says:

    The Dems will be unable to resist showing up, putting on a big show that appeals to biracial transgender Muslim illegal immigrants and their enablers while making Trump look even more sane to the other 97% of the country.
    This kind of street theatre is combination tent revival/struggle session to these sorts. Their psychology won’t allow them to respond otherwise.

  9. David E. Solomon says:

    Hi Eric,
    I don’t think the Democrats are pushing themselves left at all. That is really the problem.
    Bill Clinton somehow convinced the nation that he stood for the same political goals as the Left. I am thinking of things like universal health care and expanded retirement benefits, and also an end to stupid wars.
    In reality, the only things that the Democrats hold dear are self-aggrandizement and increasing wealth for the bi-coastal elites.
    That holds true for the current and past house and senate leadership.
    If we could stop arguing about bathroom rights and other relatively silly topics, we might actually notice that those people labeled as “deporables” by the Clintons, actually have many of the same goals as people on the left.

  10. different clue says:

    robt willmann,
    When we consider that these “Democrats” are mainly the Clintonites and the Obamazoids, should we consider the possibility that they are trying to poison the well ahead of time against the Sanderistas so that the TV audience at home will conflate any future Sanderista movements with just more Clintonites and Obamazoids? And that the current Clintobamazoid owners of the Democratic Party understand exactly what Trump and the Republicans really are doing behind the scenes, beneath the stage and in the trenches? And that the Clintobamazoids consider helping the Trumpublicans achieve that to be an acceptable price to pay for preventing the Sanderistas from conquering the DemParty and purging and burning every malignant Clintonoma cell and Yersiniobama pestis plague bacterium from out of the party?

  11. different clue says:

    What you describe sounds like what the Reagan Administration first worked on doing . . . destroying the Federal departments and agencies from within. What percent of Trump voters thought they were voting for that when they voted for Trump? As against what percent of Trump voters thought they were voting to get some of their jobs back from foreign captivity? And voting to prevent any more Forced Trade Agreements and perhaps cancel the ones we are already in?
    If the Republicans take this as their chance to Make America Sick Again, Make America Polluted Again, sack, pillage, loot and destroy every thing of value which has not yet been sacked, pillaged, looted and destroyed . . . how many of the non-rich Trump voters will be happy with that outcome?
    I realized there was a risk of getting just this result when I voted “for” Trump in order to stop the Clintons before they kill again. And yet the Clintobamazoids are making a desperate effort to keep control of the Democratic Party to make very sure that no-one is permitted anything better to vote for. If we cannot get Obamazoidal Clintonism exterminated from every corner of American political and civic life, then all the pain and collateral damage of the Trump Administration will have been for nothing.

  12. Dabbler says:

    Several salient points in the main posting and comments. A synopsis is that Trump is likely bear-baiting to create a show and a distraction while the real action occurs behind the veil. Also to shore up his slightly eroding base. The most effective Dem response would be non-attendance (Trump shaking his stick at empty seats would be theatrically counterproductive), but Democrats lack sufficient discipline and cohesion to pull this off. “I ain’t part of an organized political party; I’m a Democrat” – Will Rogers.
    Interesting juxtaposition between the upcoming address to Congress and the recent exclusion of many MSM members from the press briefing. More atypical events likely to follow. Pass the popcorn, please.

  13. different clue says:

    This is the one opportunity that Sanderistas have to avoid getting tainted by the Mainstream Democrat tantrums. The Sanderistas can make very clear that THEY are NOT showing up to ANY Mainstream Democrat tantrums.
    How can the very few Sanderista-minded Democratic officeholders separate themselves very visibly from the mainstream tantrum-throwers? By acting polite and respectable in their seats in the House and the Senate, rising when all rise, sitting when all sit, and clapping at all the clap lines.
    Meanwhile, Sanderistas on the “outside” could stage counterdemonstration against the Pink Kitty Cap demostrators with signs like #NotMyResistance and so forth.
    The Good Ship Clintitanic may be sinking. The Clintonites are determined to sink every Sanderista along with themselves. The Sanderistas have to get in their own lifeboats and get as far away from the Clintitanic as they can in order to avoid getting sucked down with it.

  14. different clue says:

    Eric Newhill,
    The Pink Kitty Cap left and the NPR Tote Bag liberaleft will do their best to drown and and suppress the New Deal Reactionary Left. They have been very successful so far. They conspired to cheat Sanders out of any hope of primary victory, for example. And they throw every wet blanket of silence they can over every Sanderista they see in order to prevent even the appearance of a possible choice between the Pink Kitty Cap left and the New Deal Revival left.
    This would be a fine time for the Sanderistas to save themselves from Pink Kitty Cap contamination and infection by making clear that they reject any unity whatever with the NPR Tote Bag Liberal Democrats.
    #PumasOnTheOtherFootNow. I hope somebody on the Sanders side makes that into a #Twitter-hashtag to see how far it can go.

  15. sleepy says:

    I can only speak of the “deplorables” in my neck of the woods, in north Iowa and neighboring Minnesota and Wisconsin, but imho they are not interested in any “cultural revolution” or culture wars, but in economic security, i.e., jobs.

  16. Tyler says:

    “Slight eroding support”

  17. Eric Newhill says:

    If you want a New Deal type leader, then you need look no further than Trump. You can have your cake and eat it too. New Deal and no pink hats, no gender confused bathroom contests, no aggrieved minority gimme dat grandstanding……why look any further than Trump?

  18. ex-PFC Chuck says:

    Just saw that Tom Perez was elected to DNC chair. Looks like the party has condemned itself to another decade or two in the political wilderness.
    I continue to lean strongly to the hypothesis that the various protests and shenanigans are being carried out at the behest of the deep pocket funders of the Democratic Party for the primary purpose of distracting the party’s sheeple voters away from thinking about why so many of their erstwhile base either voted for Trump, a non-legacy party candidate or voted with their butts at home on the couch.
    If Sanders wants to continue having a significant impact he needs to formally withdraw from the Senate minority caucus and focus on building a grass roots progressive movement with the intent of either wresting from below the Democratic Party away from Wall Street’s strangle hold on it or, failing that, making it into a viable alternative party. It’ll probably cost him his ranking member perch on the Budget Committee and perhaps other committee memberships as well, but being in the minority that’s not such a big deal.

  19. Eric Newhill says:

    Reading all f your comments here, you seem convinced that there is daylight between the temper tantrum elements and the Sanders elements. I am not so sure about that. The Sanders people consist of a lot of open borders commies and freebie seekers too, from what I’ve seen.

  20. FourthAndLong says:

    Chuck Shumer’s idea of Guerrilla warfare. Imagine if the Israelis had him in place of Ben Gurian.

  21. Tyler says:

    Equal chances on “HELLO FELLOW POPULISTS” false flag or Michael B Doughtery style virtue signalling.
    Flip a coin.

  22. Tyler says:

    Boy oh boy I hope Keith Ellison does not take that lying down.

  23. Tyler says:

    They elected Trump to stop unelected federal mandarins from:
    – Forcing schools to allow boys claiming to be girls to shower with their daughters
    – Claiming running water on one’s property during rain meant that the property fell under the purview of the Clean Water Act and you needed an environmental study before you could do so much as landscape
    – Dumping refugees on their town and claiming that there was nothing one could do about it
    – Ordering you to buy a product that did nothing for you, that you couldn’t use, and cost you a significant chunk of your income
    Just a few examples.

  24. Eric Newhill says:

    “slighting eroding support”?
    I was getting a bit to eat today at a local diner and reading our local county newspaper, which is written and edited by the local SUNY faculty and student body and which, therefore is, of course, a pink hat, free the oppressed tansgender muslim dreamers and please, mommie government, give us lots of goodies, type commie rag.
    And it too had several hysterically angry opinion pieces going on and on about Trump supporters are now regretting their vote. This must be a new mass hallucination for lefties. I don’t know any Trump supporters that are disappointed. Well, I maybe am a little – Trump is being too reticent to begin tossing lefties out of helicopters. I wish he’d just get on with the inevitable ;-), but otherwise this supporter and all that I know are grading Trump at an A to A+.

  25. Mishkilji says:

    “IMO he seeks the confrontation in the belief that the Democrats will look foolish and disrespectful to his office.”
    IMO the precedent for this has already been set by the other side seven years ago.
    All the Democrats need to is hold up signs stating:

  26. TV says:

    The Democrats are following the lead of the British Labour party – making themselves increasingly irrelevant.

  27. LeeG says:

    Maybe Trump can limit robotics in manufacturing and increase the price of Chinese goods at Walmart. That should help re establish US hand made goods sector.

  28. turcopolier says:

    You would approve of that? I thought the last one should have been censured by Congress. pl

  29. raven says:

    What ya gonna do with this guy Tyler? “(CNN)New national security adviser H.R. McMaster is already setting a strikingly different tone than his ousted predecessor, Michael Flynn, and President Donald Trump, saying the term “radical Islamic terrorism” isn’t helpful for US goals.
    At an all-hands meeting of the National Security Council on Thursday, Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster said jihadist terrorists aren’t true to their religion and that the use of the term “radical Islamic terrorism” doesn’t help the US in working with allies to defeat terrorist groups, an official present at the session confirmed to CNN.
    McMaster also spoke in starkly different terms about Russia, saying the talk about Moscow being a friend of Washington is over, the source said.”

  30. Nancy K says:

    I refuse to give any money to the DNC. I will support local/state candidates and causes but nada to the DNC.

  31. VietnamVet says:

    Donald Trump will do the presidential address now that it has been announced. He won’t back down. It will be pure theater like his press conference.
    I was in the First Cold War and Steve Bannon reminds me of those charismatic provocateurs in the 1960s. I was there. This is not right verses left. It is Nationalists verses Globalists. The ruling oligarchs don’t give a damn for the little people left or right. They are fighting over who controls the federal government. I have never seen anything like this before. Faux-Liberals are labeling the Trump Administrations as “a Russian puppet government”. This is insane hysteria. WWIII will kill everybody in the Northern Hemisphere.
    The weird thing about the alt.right’s xenophobia and deconstruction is that getting rid of federal laws and regulations is a fast track return to the 1846 Wild West and the inevitable Calexit. Americans, once again, will not be sure that the food is pure, medicines effective, water safe to drink or if the air is fit to breath. Those living in mid-America’s No Man’s Land will again have to contend with Bushwackers.

  32. Mishkilji says:

    Censure? Yes, I agree, but it didn’t happen.
    We both come from a background where policing one’s ranks is an imperative–and the GOP failed miserably in this regard. In fact, the jerk became a hero to some.
    So would I approve of a silent protest sign if President Trump crossed a moral redline in the course of this speech?
    Yes, but it would have to be a reprehensible utterance.
    Now ask yourself two things: do think that is in the realm of possibility? (I do).
    What course would you suggest if he did?

  33. BillWade says:

    Just curious, why don’t Democrats feel lied to by the MSM? Was not the Coronation stated to be a “sure thing”.

  34. Dabbler says:

    “Slightly eroding support” may have been an insensitive, a result of reading too many tea leaves. It might have been better to say “There is also the possibility that he fears republican support for him is declining in Congress. He needs that support to pass important legislation like the corporate income tax reduction. A Democratic “riot” in the capitol might be helpful in rallying Republican support”, except that was said in the original posting. Bannon’s point about “wrestling for the gun” seems apropos.

  35. turcopolier says:

    An affront to the president is never justified. If they know in advance that they will object to his speech they should not attend. If they do they should be silent. Yes. I remember that I am a retired offifer. I would never offer a rebuke to the CInC even if I felt compelled to disobey an order. Apparently you do not feel the same way. pl

  36. turcopolier says:

    Perhaps this is public diplomacy aimed at the gathering lynch mob and the Congress. pl

  37. PeterHug says:

    True – but jobs is the one thing Trump cannot deliver. They are gone because of structural and technological issues that no President can touch, I’m afraid.

  38. turcopolier says:

    Peter Hug
    But you are not willing to give him a chance, are you? pl

  39. Eric Newhill says:

    “…the [highly mysterious un-named never to actually materialize if it ever even existed] source said” in other words, FAKE NEWS.

  40. Babak Makkinejad says:

    23 years ago I questioned one of my colleagues – a 50 something man with a Ph.D. in Mathematics who hailed from Georgia – along similar lines as you have stated above.
    His reply:
    “It is our country and we can destroy it if we want to.”
    There really is no answer to the man who still lives in kinder-garten, is there?

  41. Tyler says:

    That was actually my point (me!) in regards to “wrestling for the gun”, in that Bannon recognizes that we are on the edge here and there is no backing down.
    Unless of course, you are insinuating that I am Steve Bannon, to which I can only state that I am far prettier. Regardless…
    He doesn’t need Republican support to “pass a corporate tax income” – this is where your bias keeps on showing. He needs Cuckservative support to do something like reform the dumpster fire that is Obamacare, enforce the statutes of the INA to the hilt, and keep Juan McAmnesty and Lindsay “The Lisp” Graham from brinksmanship with Russia in order to avoid a nuclear exchange over the Ukraine or Syria.

  42. Tyler says:

    What are we gonna do with this guy, raven? Running in here quoting pieces that quote unnamed sources. I took blindly accept everything that confirms all my long held biases.
    lmbo what’s the going rate for a CTR shill nowadays? Whatever it is, they paying you too much.

  43. Tyler says:

    Good gosh, talk about projection.txt.
    Bannon is diametrically opposed to the actual neocons who want to start WWIII, and you’re talking about “insane hysteria” because Bannon wants to deconstruct the unelected mandarin state?
    Yeah bro, there’s hysteria but it’s not coming from him.

  44. Tyler says:

    Or, raven is just a (poorly) paid shill here to push the silliest fake news to distract from the dumpster fire that is the Left right now.

  45. Tyler says:

    Because they really, really, REALLY believe that the Russians stole the election by hacking the voting machines.

  46. Tyler says:

    – He won’t make it to December
    – He won’t make it to Iowa
    – He won’t make it to Super Tuesday
    – He won’t beat Jeb!
    – He won’t beat Rubio.
    – He won’t beat Ted Cruz.
    – He won’t win the primary.
    – He won’t be nominated by the party.
    – He won’t last the summer.
    – He won’t come back from Access Hollywood.
    – He won’t win the debates.
    – He won’t win Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Florida, and Wisconsin.
    – He won’t be nominated by the electoral college.
    – He won’t be inaugurated.
    – He won’t block terrorists.
    – He won’t deport illegals.
    – He won’t order the wall built.
    – He won’t bring back manufacturing jobs.
    ******YOU ARE HERE**********
    – He won’t make peace with Russia.
    – He won’t build the wall.
    – He won’t defeat IS.
    – He won’t put colonies on the Moon.
    – He won’t put colonies on Mars.

  47. Dabbler says:

    “He doesn’t need Republican support to “pass a corporate tax income” – this is where your bias keeps on showing.” – You’re pulling the trigger beforeyou distinguish the target. The bit about Trump needing Republican support to pass a corporate income tax reduction was a direct quote from Col. Lang’s original post in this thread.
    On the other hand, if “wresting for the gun” is your phrase rather than Bannon’s, good job, bro. As for my bias, this whole thing is much more interesting (and entertaining) than any politics since I was a kid. I’m just watching…

  48. David says:

    Amazing thing that “Good Ship” Clintitanic, for it was sunk by colliding with an ice cube.

  49. raven says:

    Yep, silly indeed and I’m rollin in dough from Soros.
    “Retired Army Col. Peter Mansoor, who served with McMaster during the 2007 surge in Iraq, told Fox News, before McMaster’s meeting, that the general “absolutely does not view Islam as the enemy. He also believes McMaster will “present a degree of pushback against the theories being propounded in the White House that this is a clash of civilizations and needs to be treated as such.”

  50. LeaNder says:

    A more cursory check on the topic debated here suggests to me that this is launched by a limited group of democrats that may slightly hyperventilate. Notice in spite of the use of this term no harm meant.
    Vaguely this reminds me of Harper’s recent contribution. Trying to give their voters the impression: we’ll stand up for you? But also somewhat misuse them in the process?
    Thus, is there really enough fodder to base grand theories on?

  51. turcopolier says:

    There is something wrong with your post. I understood every word of it. pl

  52. Dr. Puck says:

    I have almost no confidence in the Dems figuring out how to unify to concoct an attractive populist ‘leftism.’
    I suspect the fundamental challenge for Trump/Bannon is how to deconstruct the AS, drain the swamp (meaning, nowadays, erasing the utopian ‘left,’) and not allow the GOP to dial up their plutocratic designs via supply-side, trickle down, special interest favoring, budget-busting, neo-Reaganomics.
    Will supply-side bust the economy in our age of hyper-financialization–a condition not anywhere near as prominent back in 1982?
    What then, if deconstruction unfolds beautifully, but the economy quickly tanks as the Trump tax cuts flow into the paper economy rather than into the productive economy?

  53. LeaNder says:

    Ok, I’ll reflect on it:
    more randomly: or on recent related matters. Whoever felt I didn’t respond, thus paid no attention. In this specific case optimax, I did follow his links. But also reduced it to “necessary or helpful VIP”. …
    Beyond that: shutting up for a while. …

  54. ex-PFC Chuck says:

    To the paymasters of the Democratic Party the whole point of the pink kitty cap demonstrations is to be a “Look over there!” that distracts the party’s sheeple from realizing that it was the party leaders’ policies and modus operendi that has caused the catastrophic collapse in popular support. The paymasters and the current leadership is perfectly fine with the way things are. Whatever disruption the demonstrations might inhibit the Trump administration from gaining traction is a side benefit.

  55. Eric Newhill says:

    You realize that 1. the quote you just posted doesn’t mean the CNN anon. source, from the quote you posted earlier, is real. They are not exactly saying or talking about the same thing and nuance is important enough, let alone entire phrasings and context. 2. I am unaware that Mansoor is McMaster’s official spokesman and is qualified to speak on his behalf. So Mansoor is just another guy getting paid to express an opinion. How well does he actually know McMaster? These are the kinds of thoughts and questions that leap to the forefront of my mind when looking at a “news” story. But then I am interested in finding out what is actually going on. I don’t want my biases confirmed, I want as pure info. as possible.
    You, on the other hand, are grasping at straws in an effort to demonstrate your biases; that Trump is stupid, evil and crazy and there is “chaos” and divisiveness within the Trump admin. . It’s really obvious.

  56. Degringolade says:

    I think that the phrase:
    “Trying to give their voters the impression: we’ll stand up for you? But also somewhat misuse them in the process?”
    Amounts to a job description of the political class in general (to include our good President Trump).

  57. Eric Newhill says:

    “Even the Republican rank-and-file has been awestruck at the ferocity of the reaction they received when they announced they were going to “repeal the ACA.” ”
    This concept does pass muster. There simply aren’t enough people enrolled in the ACA to cause such a scary blow back relative to other salient issues and, furthermore, I don’t think most of those enrolled in the ACA are Republicans. More bias confirming fake news?
    You’re also not entirely correct about the clean water thing. Living in a rural farming community, my neighbors and I keep a close eye on these issues. The dairy farmers were worried because the local lawyers were saying that the presence of manure piles could be an issue. Rain water runs off the piles and then goes places. That could a big problem under the clean water act, but try running a dairy farm (or a horse farm) without building up a manure pile at least in the winter when you can’t drive a spreader.

  58. On 17th May 2005 a British MP, George Galloway, was allowed to appear before a Senate Subcommittee. There he launched a ferocious attack on members of that committee and on American policy generally. I have rarely heard a politician speak with such conviction and passion and it left an indelible impression.
    For all that I was on George Galloway’s side I was impressed with the Subcommittee’s response. They heard him out in dead silence and the questioning afterwards, though sharp, was formal. It’s a great contrast to the hooligan barracking Sahra Wagenknecht, speaking on similar topics, is subjected to in the Bundestag. Quite a contrast also to the prep school antics we’ve got accustomed to on occasion in our own House of Commons. The European parliaments aren’t as bad as the Verkhovna Rada, where the politicians are considerably more accomplished in unarmed combat than they are in debate, but they often don’t look like places where much serious politics gets done.
    I occasionally see other videos showing Americans public life – Senate hearings, press conferences and the like – and have always thought that though it’s quite often a shambles it’s a more civilised shambles than the norm in European politics. For that reason it is in fact easier for politicians who are going against the flow to get a fair hearing than it is here. That’s got to be a good thing for anyone who, like me, still harbours the perhaps illusory hope that democracy can actually work as it’s supposed to. It’d be a pity, therefore, if American public life went the same way as ours.

  59. Eric Newhill,
    I’m confident he stories about McMaster’s comments at his all hands NSC meeting will be batted down soon if not true. From what I’m reading, his views are congruent with these comments.
    In a CSIS in May 2016 he said, “groups like ISIL, who use this irreligious ideology, this perverted interpretation of religion to justify violence. They depend on ignorance, and the ability to recruit vulnerable segments of populations to foment hatred, and then use that hatred to justify violence against innocents.”
    In his 21 Nov 2016 speech at VMI he said, “we will defeat today’s enemies, including terrorist organizations like Daesh, who cynically use a perverted interpretation of religion to incite hatred and justify horrific cruelty against innocents.”
    I’m going to listen to a few of his talks to get a more complete idea of his thinking on this matter. He does seem to be at odds with the inner White House view that Islam itself is the problem and that terrorism is inherently Islamic. That view is stupid, evil and crazy and it will lead to bad decisions.

  60. He may yet fail but the President refuses to not make choices. This speech will be designed to achieve multiple objectives, and make no mistake it is designed.

  61. Trump and the Republicans are right to smirk over the Perez victory. They didn’t destroy the Clinton DNC. They left it to turn into a shuffling, rotting zombie. Looks like the Sanders Progressives will try to reform it from within for now. That’s a step backward in my opinion, but we’ll know for sure in about a year.

  62. trinlae says:

    I expect we will see a “wheat vs chaff” filtering process for all player blocks, i.e.:
    1. who can distinguish (and work with) the office of the presidency vs. the idosyncracies occupant of that office. Those unwilling or unable to do so are then not in a good position to insist that the occupant himself do this.
    2. who will expend political capital to please party backers and seniors regardless of personal policial stances
    3. who will cross party party lines or where will independents coalition
    This kind of thing. At another level, the speech will be for the public and eyes and ears will be on reactions from that sector. With public and local feedback, DT will be able to calculate who he can deal with based on each individua’s electability prospects, obligations to promises, etc..

  63. Cee says:

    I think more of us departed than has been reported. A comedian at a comedy club asked for a show of hands of Trump supporters. I think I was alone but when I was leaving some young women whispered to me that they voted for him too but didn’t want to admit it.
    Kasich is right. You have to now root for the pilot flying the plane.
    I did your hash tag. We’ll see.

  64. turcopolier says:

    Sanders told Tapper this AM that he will not turn his mail list of former donors over to Perez at the DNC. Sanders raised a lot of money and he said he will use his leverage to move the Democrats far to the left. If Trump manages to increase GDP growth and re-patriate a lot of money through a corporate income tax cut the Dems will be out of power for a long time. pl

  65. Cee says:

    Trump isn’t into the foreign intervention of the HRC-Kissinger-Negroponte helicopter type.

  66. Tyler says:

    “Everything you said might be true but it doesn’t matter because I said so and I declare myself the winner”.
    Dis guy.
    >my sides
    >to the moon
    Never change with your half ass argument by assertion. 2020 gonna be amazing.

  67. Tyler says:

    I assumed he was being facetious and you were not based off the “eroding support” phrase.
    But thank you regardless.

  68. Tyler says:

    I didn’t say you were a well paid shill. Just a poorly paid one grasping so tightly at straws you’re making hay bales.

  69. pl,
    That news about Sander’s increased cantankerousness is heartening. In line with that I received this message from Bernie’s group “Our Revolution” that he started well before the election.
    “I’m sure this DNC election has stirred up similar feelings to the ones you felt during and after the primary. It did for me. While Tom Perez ran a good race, many who supported him used tactics that were uncalled for. But he also made promises about building a grassroots party. We are going to hold his feet to the fire. One of the first steps he could take is to reimpose the ban on lobbyist money that President Obama put in — and which those at this meeting shamefuly refused to support. There’s too much at stake to let the Democratic Party continue its old (and losing) ways. With Trump and his allies controlling Washington we have to take it upon ourselves to elect progressives even if elements of the Democratic Party are locked in complacency.”
    You’re right about the importance of Trump succeeding or failing on the home economic front. That is what will change the political direction of our government. He will certainly provide the “populus” with the circuses, but he must also provide the bread.

  70. turcopolier says:

    Should I understand that you are a Democrat? pl

  71. pl,
    Much more so than a Republican. I couldn’t fill in the circle for Trump or Clinton in this election. I supported McAuliffe over Cuccinelli, but I would have supported Hogan over Brown in Maryland. I still consider myself a Bernie Bro and feel even a closer affinity to Gabbard’s politics. I get emails from both Our Revolution and Team Tulsi, but I told the DNC to piss up a rope.
    You’ve characterized the lefties and the coastal elites pretty well. Could you briefly do the same for the fly overs and deplorables? They cannot all be white supremacist, clash of civilization types. That has to be foolishly simplistic caricature.

  72. ISL says:

    Dear Colonel and TTG,
    Sanders raised (past tense) a lot of money. And then he lost to HRC with it and did not use it to fight (the DNC) against an unjust loss.
    Now there are three factions competing for the Democratic party – the 0.01%/globalist (CNN/MSNBC), the hysterical left (CNN), and the progressive (TYT) -Sanderista – faction. TYT (The Young Turks) reflects the progressive and believes they can win out over the money. Since Trump will not overturn citizen’s united, and the DNC sees no reason to play fair, I agree with your assessment of out of power zombies.
    Particularly, since the Republican progressive faction (InfoWars) argues for recruiting dispirited Sanders followers. I think they tap the mood of the country.
    Having read about the formation of new parties in the US, do you think the Democrats (shuffling rotting zombie) could disappear? My gut tells me this is not a zero probability likelihood. I think if Trump disappoints the deplorables in the only way that counts – jobs – this probability increases.

  73. Eric Newhill says:

    OK. You are quoting the man himself as opposed to CNN.
    I still don’t hear where McMaster is saying that using the term “radical Islam” is dangerous. In fact, he seems to be singling out “radical Islam” and saying that it is the problem and is not true Islam; rather a perversion.
    Of course the our host, the good Colonel, has helped us understand that there is no “true Islam”. Islam is whatever a Muslim or group of Muslims interprets it to be. Ergo, the Jihadis are just as Islamic as any other Muslim or sect of Muslims. So McMaster, a non-Muslim, is trying assume the role of Immam of all Immmams? How is that going to play with Muslims? I don’t know, but if I was a Muslim I might think it a bit arrogant.
    Anyhow, Trump – and by extension America – has Bannon that thinks there is a clash of civilizations and he/we have McMaster who thinks that the civilizations can live together *if the radicals are removed from Islam*. Seems to me like a good thing to have a balance of opinions informing the WH. Unless you are totally sold on one concept or the other.
    I am sensing you believe in McMaster’s position. I do not. I am more of a Bannonite on this issue; “more of” means leaning in that direction, but definitely open to reasonable persuasion towards McMasterism. But then I am a 50% descendant of an ancient culture, the first officially Christian culture, that suffered horribly under Islam and then was almost rubbed out completely in 1915. That colors my views, I admit. I’m in my early 50s. My entire life time the religion of peace has been most un-peaceful. I get the same from reading history. I’m sure somewhere, some time, there is opportunity for the Islam that McMaster knows, real Islam to prevail and live in harmony with Jews and Christians and progressive western society generally.

  74. Valissa says:

    TTG, please note that the following critique is of the email and Democrats in general (including Bernie, who is also a long time member of the establishment for all his hippyish quirks), and not of you personally.
    This sort of political messaging is very vague… with no purpose except to soothe the Bernie Dem masses. “Hold his feet to the fire”… “building a grassroots party” and “elect more progressives” are phrases I saw/heard for many years when I was still a progressive Dem and even joined the netroots. This strategy has never worked… never… to improve the Democratic party. Yet they keep playing their same game, and all tribal members play along. It’s a feel good belonging sort of thing, I guess.
    No delineation of what exactly is meant by “its old (and losing) ways.” Is this because he expects you all to intuitively know what he means? The evidence I’ve seen so far in Democratic-friendly media and amongst my liberal friends is that they do not at all seem to understand why they are losing.
    No specifics about what items or issues the Democrats should push now to benefit all Americans and widen their support beyond urban areas.
    There’s a reason that so many, like myself, have left the Democratic Party in the last 10-15 years. It’s an outdated wreck with no new or fresh ideas, and many are finally getting fed up with the overdone political correctness.
    I didn’t vote for Trump as I’m a third party voter, but like you I hope he is able to trigger some economic improvements. But where does that leave the Democratic party? As the party who is so anti-Trump that they want his attempts at bettering the average American’s lot to fail? Howz that gonna work out for ya?

  75. Cvillereader says:

    Whoever said that terrorism is inherently Islamic? I am sure that most Americans would agree that the IRA was a terrorist organization.
    I think a more precise description of the problem is that Islam has an inherent tendency to become radically violent given a particular set of circumstances. Some rather learned people point to the Islamic concept of Allah not being bound by reason as the underlying problem. Try Fr. James Schall, S.J. on the subject, if you are interested.
    Perhaps some people are right that the term “Islamic terrorism” is counterproductive, because it has the disadvantage of alienating peaceful Muslims with whom we can become friends.
    I think what a lot of Americans are worried about is that Islam may not be compatible with Western values. The recent goings on in Europe certainly might suggest that is the case.
    Something that I find troubling is that there is no Islamic majority country in the world that offers protections to religious minorities.
    None of the above necessitates that we wage war on Islamic nations. It may mean, though, that it is prudent to restrict Immigration from certain countries.

  76. Eric Newhill says:

    TTG, I should add that the Grand Imam of Al Azhar (revered Sunni experts) doesn’t think ISIS is un-Islamic:
    Is McMaster a more qualified Imam than that?

  77. charly says:

    Putting it in a silo and you don’t have any problem with the rain. I believe it is standard to do that in Europe but it is true that it costs money.

  78. raven says:

    And tell me how the mainstream media made up the story about the father of the SEAL killed in the Yemen action refusing to meeting with the president and calling for an investigation? Payback is a bitch.

  79. raven says:

    Perhaps this is what McMaster, and anyone else who has a clue, believes. You agree with him don’t you?

  80. If we can agree that President Trump and adviser Steve Bannon hope to create a cultural revolution what would that be?

  81. different clue says:

    Eric Newhill,
    In terms of Leadership Ability, that could very well be correct. I still hope to eventually achieve or see achieved as much New Deal Restoration as feasible in today’s different situation. I still think we could restore Glass-Steagall and break up the overly-multi-function banks in a very firm, hard and clean-break manner. I would like to see PUHCA restored and all the various electric utilities firmly re-regulated as first begun during the New Deal if that is still possible. I would like to see Labor Organizing become Legal again . . . for real. ( But that can only work behind a Wall of Militant Belligerent Protectionism . . . which I would also like to see. And behind that same Militant Belligerent Protectionist Wall, I would like to see the New-Deal-initiated Minimum Wage raised in current mini-dollar terms to be worth the same actual “constant value” as it first was worth in 1930’s-era maxi-dollars. But once again . . . no Protectionist Wall? no Living Minimum Wage. No Wall? Isn’t possible. Just won’t happen).
    So I am waiting to see whether President Trump’s leadership will lead to the sort of New Deal Revival results I would like to see emerge. For now, I will still be placing side bets on Sanders and the Sanderistas. I would like to see the Sanderistas conquer and decontaminate the Democratic Party from every trace of Clintonism and Obamazoidy . . . including the eventual removal of the Obama-Clinton-type DNC Chairman Perez. I may even lend a lifted finger to that end).
    But it is good to see Trump attempting a whole infrastructure of workarounding and obscellescing the MSM as a way to reach people. If any of his people are reading this, I think a series of Fireside You Tube Chats could attract a lot of web-linked people. Whenever he got such a chat recorded, he could then tweet the time and the place of its broadcasting. Or if this idea is considered no good, it could be quietly forgotten.

  82. different clue says:

    Pacifica Advocate,
    Good. Step by step. Purge and burn.
    And keep purging and keep burning. I will lift a little finger toward that end here in Michigan.

  83. different clue says:

    I don’t have a Twitter account. I don’t have my own computer. I don’t even have a cell phone. So if you wish to register and launch that hash tag your own self, feel totally free.
    I hereby unCopyright that hashtag. I CopyLeft it and I freely give it away to anyone who wants to try it out.

  84. different clue says:

    Pacifica Advocate,
    I think some of Trump’s votes were cast by people deliberately running a desperate political science experiment in the knowledge that they would be getting something different and in the desperate hope that some of it would be something better. But for now we don’t know how many of Trump’s votes were purely desperate experiments.
    I am way up here in Michigan. I was not voting on most of the things Tyler brought up. I was even ready to give Clinton a skeptical eye until she said that “when” elected, she would put Mister Bill in charge of the Economic Recovery Plan. That turned me, and not just me, against Senator SecState Clinton. That meant that she was totally committed to TPP and all the other Forced Trade Agreements, whatever lies she told to the contrary in the meantime. We still remember NAFTA around here . . . and WTO and MFN for China. So that turned me firmly against Clinton. That was a significant Unforced Error and Own Goal on her part. That right there cost her Ohio and Michigan and Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. And that-right-there is what the Clintobamacrats still in command of the party still stand for totally and still totally support.
    So if Trump delivers the No More Forced Trade Agreements and the No War With Russia and the Keep Assad In Power that I voted for; and if the Democrats run yet another Clintobamacrat for all those three things that I am against; then I will vote for Trump all over again even though I don’t care for the culture war issues myself.

  85. different clue says:

    Dr. Puck,
    If the New Deal Reactionaries can conquer and disinfect the DemParty, they will be able to offer an honest description of New Deal Principles and people will get to decide which way forward. If they can’t, and the face of DemParty is still handpicked Clintobama Pelosi clones, then a lot of people will try crafting their own survival in the context of semi-de-monetized Community Lifeboat Survivalism.

  86. different clue says:

    Well, it turns out the Good Ship Clintitanic may have been made out of glass and cotton candy. Let us hope.

  87. different clue says:

    It took the International Forced Trade Conspiracy several decades to de-job America. It would take the National Protectionist Movement several decades to re-job America as much as feasible.
    If flat-out robotization has vaporised jobs except for some jobs for robot-tenders, we can at least bring back most of that robotized production back into America so that the few robot-tender jobs still existing will be here in America instead of there in somewhere else.
    And not every job needs to be robotized, or even should be. For example, Bulldog Tools from Claringdon Forge in England are regarded as the best tools of their type in the world. And they are still hand-made with the human-guided assIStance of powerful machines. We could restore production of that sort here in this country for some things.

  88. turcopolier says:

    Soldiers (to include SEALs) are not police. their business is fighting, killing and dying. You cannot have an investigation every time one is killed. I don’t care about the story. pl

  89. robt willmann says:

    English Outsider,
    This should be the lively appearance by George Galloway before the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations on 17 May 2005, which was “investigating” how Saddam Hussein was maneuvering around regarding the United Nations Oil for Food Program–,2015
    The Oil for Food Program came into being after the sanctions were imposed after the Iraq War began in 1991 and after the Kuwait phase. The sanctions resulted in the now infamous statement by “Secretary of State” Madeleine Albright on the 60 Minutes television program in 1996 that contributing to the death of 500,000 Iraqi children was “worth it”–
    A sideshow to the Oil for Food Program came up when after a while Saddam Hussein was alleged to have wanted some extra money from those who were buying Iraqi oil and selling it for the UN program. This gave the Bush family an opportunity to strike back at their old nemesis, Texas oilman Oscar Wyatt of Houston.
    Oscar had done oil and gas business with Iraq in the past, and before the war started in 1991, some U.S. persons were stuck inside of Iraq. It was primarily Oscar Wyatt who got the Americans out before the war and bombing started–
    But then, Oscar was charged in New York City with federal offenses related to claimed violations of the Oil for Food Program when Saddam wanted a little surcharge in the transactions, and a trial began–
    Oscar engaged in voluntary commercial transactions with Iraq before 1991, and got Americans out before the war started in 1991. We can then ask whether the acts of the Bush family toward Iraq and the people in it were as constructive as those of Oscar Wyatt.

  90. Cvillereader,
    “Something that I find troubling is that there is no Islamic majority country in the world that offers protections to religious minorities.”
    You should look at Malaysia, Indonesia, Lebanon and Syria. That covers a lot of Islamic majority. They’re certainly not perfect, but what can you expect when imperfect man is involved.

  91. Eric Newhill,
    I do lean heavily toward the McMaster position. I’m glad he’s there to counter Bannon and others who think war against the Islamic world is inevitable. They’re just as dangerous as those who think war with Russia is inevitable. Those kinds of true believers are going to get a lot of people killed.
    I’m also a descendant of an ancient culture, but my ancestors fought and killed, alongside their Muslim Lipka Tartar allies, the invading Christian crusaders. Christianity has come a long way since then, but we still dream of baptizing all people in the name of Christ. I’ve worked with Malaysian scout-trackers and Taureg scouts and consider them comrades rather than radical enemies. Perhaps McMaster has worked with similar Muslim brethren.
    I’m all for sending the jihadis to their paradise as quickly and efficiently as possible. I’m also for stymieing, or at least not supporting, their co-religionists who are supporting those jihadis. That means stopping our idiotic policy of kissing up to the Saudis. I can’t understand why an ideologically driven Bannon would not convince Trump to dump that policy.

  92. Sam Peralta says:

    Col. Lang,
    The biggest economic & financial risk I see for Trump is that a) we’ve not had a recession in 8 years and b) the stock market hasn’t had a 30-40% correction in the same amount of time.
    Both these could happen on his watch. If he could engineer them, he should take them right now and get it over with and have the tail wind of economic and financial asset price growth as he heads towards re-election.

  93. Sam Peralta says:

    I think if you really want to understand the Trump administration you should listen to this interview of Bannon and Priebus.
    Bannon was clear nothing should come as a surprise. He said, focus on what Trump said at his rallies during the campaign. It seems the MSM is very surprised that anyone would follow through on what they campaigned on.
    They have a 3-prong strategy which Bannon articulated very well.
    Let’s see how they bring along the Republicans in Congress to this vision.

  94. Cvillereader says:

    He’s also not right about the bathroom issue.
    It wasn’t only the issues involved with violating the female right to privacy. It was the utter cluelessness of it all.
    Most people have more pressing concerns than trying not to hurt the feelings of teenagers who most likely have psychological issues regarding the biological sex they were born with.

  95. Blrturner says:

    White People STOP WHINNING. GO TO COLLEGE, If YOU WANT A JOB MAKING $40 per hour. Otherwise, blame the man/woman in the mirror for your life. Advise from African American College Graduate Female in Memphis, TN. Alert, manufacturing is not coming back company supply chains ars were they are four a reason
    Alert, #2. Donald J. Trump has not accomplished anything to date.

  96. Phil Cattar says:

    ex-PFC,I think what a lot of people are missing is that whether the protestors are paid or not is not the important point.I have a very strong hunch that the protestors are ORGANIZED and maybe even more important,they are not of the same party of the Senator or Congressman hosting the open house.Even though obviously anyone of any political party can attend a town hall meeting of their Senator or Congressman ,generally speaking most people are more likely to attend town meetings of THEIR TOWN and probably their party……I have a gut feeling that many of the more vocal protestors at these town hall meetings did not vote for the person hosting the town hall and have no attention of ever doing so………….This sets it up the MSM to report it as if the Senator’s or Congressman’s constituents are all riled up when that is not the case……If it was possible to check the id and voting record of the most vocal (and crazy) of these protestors,I think my hunch would be proven correct.

  97. Eric Newhill says:

    The deplorables I know are not really white supremacists at all. However, it’s all in how you define things.
    You might not want to believe this, but most deplorables where I live are actually carriers of MLK’s dream torch.
    What they object to – and what gets labeled as white supremacy by lefties – is a glorified ghetto culture blaming racism for its problems, BLM types shouting racism when some thug of color gets shot for attacking a cop, enforcement of immigration being called racism, affirmative action giving a job to someone less qualified just because of that person’s skin color. That sort of thing. The left levels a charge of racism at anyone that objects to what is, de facto, reverse racism.
    Deplorables I know want a country where the only identity politics are around the concept that we are all, first and foremost, Americans and that the quality of one’s character and contribution to our society, workplace, etc. is what counts. Period. Full stop.
    But the left won’t allow that. The very raison d’etre for the left is the belief that there is massive social injustice and that the victims need to be protected and saved by enlightened missionaries from the hallowed halls of social science departments. So the left constantly stokes the fires of divisiveness and spreads myths of a country immoral and unjust to its core. Deplorables are sick of it all. They’ve taken their lumps and carried on without the sympathy or help of the mandarins. They’ve fought the wars for the mandarins. The mandarins sent their jobs overseas and then labeled them “bitter clingers”, “deplorable”, “racist”, all the while glorifying the ghetto dwellers, the foreigners, the gender confused, the communists – and telling the deplorables to go eat cake and shut up and pay the taxes to support all the freaks, criminals, commies and America bashers.
    That’s all there is to it, IMO.

  98. VietnamVet says:

    I look forward to your analysis of General McMaster and the Islamic State.
    I’ve seen the clash of civilizations. It is ongoing. The military is needed to defend communities from outsiders. The West’s military complex has gotten too big and dangerous. It no longer serves to protect Western citizens.
    America’s foreign policy in the Middle East is simply insane. The USA has been at war with Iraqi Sunnis for most of a quarter century. It is human nature to return to fundamental religious roots when under stress. This is no different in rural America. Debate is useless. To the followers, their belief is the true religion.
    Next door, the West has been supporting Syrian Sunnis since March 2011 at Israel’s and Gulf Monarchies’ request to take down Assad and attrit Hezbollah. The intent is also to destabilize Russia and Iran. The Syrian revolt plus the Libyan debacle has caused an existential crisis for the European Union with the flood of millions of refugees. The influx plus austerity assures the collapse of the Western Alliance. Russia has absolutely nothing to do with this dismemberment except being used as a scapegoat.
    I am not sure that the White House gets it. No matter, they are close enough to the truth to be under intense attack by Corporate Media and Global Democrats. Some powerful people are very worried that their gravy train is about to end.

  99. Fred says:

    I think you are quite right about Trump. If he helps the people in the inner cities, like Chicago, anywhere near like he says he will the Democrats are going to lose a great deal automatic vote they’ve counted on for years. On that note today’s Chicago Tribune has an article asking why former Congressman and convicted felon Jesse Jackson Jr. (son of the reverend) is collecting over $130,000 a year in “workman’s compensation” for, allegedly, bipolar disorder caused by being a member of Congress. I’m sure the new DNC Chair can explain that away over the next few years he’s busy doing party building.

  100. Babak Makkinejad says:

    The proposition that “God is not bound by Human Reason.” is not exclusive to Islam; it is there both in Judaism (see Shestov) and in Christianity (see Condemnations of 1210–1277 of Paris).
    Islam is not compatible with the current Western Culture; the ideas of Liberty etc. do not have an intellectual basis in Islam. That does not mean that they cannot, but no one has developed them to the extent of Western Thinkers. It is also exactly so in Judaism, which is also incompatible with current Western Culture (the way things are done).
    The statement “there is no Islamic majority country in the world that offers protections to religious minorities” is only partially true.
    Syncretic sects of Islam (Alevis, Alawite, Babi, Baha’ai, Sikh, Druze, Ahmadhis) do not enjoy legal protection as distinct religions; they are largely considered deviants (at best) or outright heretics (at worst).
    Zorastrianism, Judaism, Mazdaism, and Christianity do have legal protection in many Muslim states.
    I find it amusingly ironic that in this current historical moment the Shia Islamic Republic of Iran, a bastion of Shia Orthodoxy, has become the protector of many of these syncretic sects of Islam from physical destruction while the Freedom-of-Religion-Loving Fortress West and so many Sunni Muslims have become the enemies of the Shia as well as these sects.
    I wonder, is it because of oil, or is it something else?
    “This ain’t about hunting.”

  101. Fred says:

    You posted this tirade once before. Got some unsolicited advice for those of us who aren’t white people?

  102. Babak Makkinejad says:

    So, the Grand Imam has finally stated something that I stated on this forum 2 years ago?
    He must be reading my comments.

  103. Valissa,
    Your criticisms of that email are fair. It’s a short political mass mailing and it sounds like one. Time will tell if the Progressives will engage in grassroots politics at the local level. That seems like the only reasonable place to start.
    The Democrats, including Bernie, have said they’ll work with Trump on those things that promote Progressive goals like investment in the national infrastructure and saving Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare. That is a far cry from the Republican plan to ensure everything Obama tried to do failed. Remember that speech Limbaugh gave at the CPAC meeting eight years ago where he extolled the Republicans to do everything in their power to obstruct the President?

  104. Tyler says:

    Yes people crawling out from under rocks and looking for five minutes of fame by bashing President Trump was not at all a feature of the campaign.
    That Episode 89 of this song and dance is getting you so obviously turgid is pretty sad. “Calling for an investigation” LMBO.

  105. Tyler says:

    Lmbo oh lawdy.

  106. Tyler says:

    You should try giving your ADVICE to your own people. Maybe Cee can deal with your nonsense.

  107. Tyler says:

    We are not white nationalists, we are gay Nazi bodybuilders. Get it right.

  108. Eric Newhill,
    “Deplorables I know want a country where the only identity politics are around the concept that we are all, first and foremost, Americans and that the quality of one’s character and contribution to our society, workplace, etc. is what counts. Period. Full stop.”
    That sounds like the way most groups define themselves. Instead all groups tend to define the other by their most extreme members. People like Dylann Roof and Adam Purinton are truly deplorable, but they certainly don’t represent the Deplorables. Extreme examples from the left are just as deplorable and not any more representative of the left in general. The biggest difference is what each group claims most aggrieves them. Most of this aggrievement could be avoided if we stopped watching cable news, playing with Facebook and listening to all the left/right political radio. Stick to the local paper. People will still be personally wronged, will resent those wrongs, and will rightfully seek to address those wrongs. The only difference would be that national outrage wouldn’t have the fertile petri dish needed to fester.

  109. Eric Newhill says:

    If Syria wasn’t Alawi administered, do you still think that religious minorities would be protected? Religious minorities, including Alawis, are not doing so well under the salafi controlled regions.
    Lebanon is a such a mishmash of cultures I’m not sure it counts as an example of religious minority protection. There’s enough of all flavors armed that an effort to step on any particular flavor can result in bloody protracted civil war. Sunni go after the Druze and they and the Christians and Alawis will band together. Shia put a finger in the wind and extent the baksheesh collection plate to see who fills it first or most. That kind of thing. MAD at work.
    I have always thought that Indonesia and Malaysia are essentially too Asian culturally to really be included in any analysis of Muslim attitudes as those attitudes are important to the US. Kind of a confound, actually. Furthermore, that part of Asia is simply too far removed geographically from current prime time European/US interests and vice versa to be contaminated by the animosities. Why would a Malaysian personally care much about Israel? The US hasn’t bombed that part of Asia and assisted it in WW2.
    The crusades were an invasion to be defended by innocent Muslims? Afraid I see it otherwise.
    With you on hoping Bannon helps see the light with regards to removing KSA and Gulfies from the guest list.
    They aren’t real Muslims anyhow because they support ISIS and AQ. Maybe Trump can put them on the no go list and McMaster can explain to the public that they aren’t real Muslims due to said support and so the ban isn’t really targeting Muslims.
    I seriously do think that it is good for Trump to hear both ends of the spectrum.

  110. readerOfTeaLeaves says:

    Eric N,
    Speaking as a ‘lefty coastal’, does it — or should it? — matter whether ‘people enrolled in ACA are Republicans’, or any other political party?
    Blood samples, tissues samples, medical diagnostics like x-rays, MRIs, colonoscopies do not report, “This is a Republican’s scan.” Diagnostics do not notify whether, or how, a patient voted. The people analyzing those diagnostics have multiple quality control processes to ensure accuracy, irrespective of the political beliefs of a patient.
    There were two key areas of focus for the ACA: (1) enabling more people to get coverage, and (2) bringing costs down. The first part worked; the second became the fly in the ointment.
    My analysis –shared by others (some of who do health policy 40+ hours/week) — is that a key reason the ACA was not able to address ‘the cost issue’ is because the corporation-loving, fundraising happy DNC and Obama failed to dismantle: (1) health insurance behemoths, which are protected by monopoly status, as well as (2) the near-death-grip that Big Pharma has on US medical care.
    These Dem electeds didn’t have the guts and vision to dismantle large monopolies. (Bernie Sanders was the *only* candidate who fully explained this problem, which is why he strongly advocated Single Payer. People who understood this set of issues ardently supported Sanders.)
    I’d argue that the whole ACA mess is a stunning example of what I understand Col Lang to reference as ‘the result of mediocrities captured by GroupThink’.
    I am not a military strategist, but I’d argue that this was a case of ‘too many tactics, not enough strategy’. Yes, ACA ‘won’ some battles, but the larger war can’t be won without: (1) eradicating the monopoly status of health insurance corporations, as well as (2) rethinking intellectual property laws that control Pharma. At this point, I see no realistic prospect that Trump or the GOP are all that interested in these complicated problems.
    The ACA did not get to the roots of the problems of uprooting monopolies that are something like 1/12th of the US economy.
    Why is that heartbreaking?
    If you look at a map of the election, the Trump states overlay the highest per capita states in the US for: (1) obesity, (2) diabetes, (3)smoking. Far be it from me to tell anyone not to have donuts or cigars; I am talking about larger, data patterns that reveal some very sad realities for public health in many states. In the end, these all translate into quality of life for millions of citizens.
    Diabetics need good healthcare, and many of them need meds and close monitoring. (Most of them need to eat differently and move more, but helping them make those behavioral changes would require a well-developed ‘wellness’ model of healthcare, rather than the ‘crisis care’ bullshit we are currently trapped in, where a doctor is lucky to get 15 minutes per patient appointment.)
    Personally, I know absolutely no one who speaks ill of ‘deplorables’. Frankly, the people that Clinton was referring to are my cousins and childhood companions. (On the upside, Clinton was not bragging about grabbing anyone’s genitals…)
    A key factor in the split between Sanderistas like myself, and the traditional Clinton Dems is that the ‘corporatist’ DNC and Clintonistas chose to protect Big Pharma and HealthCos, at the expense of public health. That makes people like me absolutely seethe with indignation and contempt. We have looked at data about the *human cost* of protecting healthCos and Pharma — at the expense of the health of our fellow Americans, no matter where they happen to live, or who they happen to vote for — and I think we are out of patience with the charade of pseudo-change.
    The people that I know don’t view ‘red state’ people as ‘deplorable’, but they worry that these are people who proportionately at much higher risk of chronic illness — whereas, in a world with a functioning government that had guts and vision, these citizens would actually get the resources that could help them feel far, far better and result in a much better quality of life.
    The GOP wanted to score some political points and banish Obama.
    Instead, they are finding that ‘Les Deplorables’ are actually fighting back, because for this group of Americans, the ACA (or something like it) is existential.
    Interesting times.
    The dairy farmer manure issue is a whole other topic, and this comment is already too long.
    You would be amazed at how much I know about dairy farm sewer lagoons.

  111. Might be worth watching the link in the comment just above, “Sam Peralta”, which sets out what Trump intends to do.
    If you also watch a short section of the next video (from 1.15) you’ll see that the Trump team is very aware that the American economy is in the last chance saloon:-
    Just like you I’m heavily into identity politics; whites too – any whites who come from more than twenty or so miles away are regarded by my circle of deplorables with justifiable suspicion – but, again just like you presumably, I’d rather put food on the table than not and the present Western economic model isn’t guaranteed to do that for ever. Getting that right is admittedly a very long shot indeed, but it’s worth going for and maybe, if Trump succeeds, the good news will spread over our way and we’ll start to do viable economics as well.
    There are a few other problems for Trump to turn his hand to, I’ll grant you, but if I were you I’d just concentrate on getting out of that last chance saloon.

  112. LeaNder says:

    Closer to home?
    Thermidorian Reaction?

  113. President Trump should give a very very short speech IMO!
    He she ask the Congress to provide a specific Constitutional provison for each bill!
    He turn he should ask Congress to revise its notion that any Appropriations Act is in fact an Authorization for any federal program, function, or activity.

  114. Valissa says:

    Yes, of course I remember that. There’s a reason I don’t belong to or identify with any political party.
    I have always thought that tit-for-tat obstruction is childish, it annoys me no end… but I know it makes partisans feel good. IMO, the real reason for the obstruction is that there is scarcely any difference between the two major parties at the highest levels of power and money, merely superficial social issues to push people to focus on instead of paying attention to the real power and money games in Versailles on the Potomac. I prefer the label “tyranny of mall differences” to the original “narcissism of small differences.”

  115. Valissa,
    I fully agree with you on the ultimate similarity between the two major parties. They are in service to the one percenters pure and simple.

  116. Tyler,
    Ahh, that explains the strains of Pet Shop Boys and The Weather Girls tunes coming out of the local YMCA. It’s raining men, hallelujah! Kidding aside, I was actually surprised to discover how much historical truth there was to that meme.

  117. ISL,
    The Clinton big money Democratic Party has a lot of powerful backers with big money. That faction, like its Republican counterpart, will be extremely resilient. I have no idea what the tipping point will be. The one percenters have been quite successful in ensuring they do not get the blame for the mess we are in. They are thrilled that the hoi polloi remain at each others throats rather than coming after the rich with pitchforks and torches.

  118. Tyler says:

    Ironically was reading about the Thermidorian Reaction, but yes.
    I hope we can dispense with the reign of terror portion of things and go right into the counter-reactionary pushback.

  119. Tyler says:

    It comes down to: there is a vocal minority of Americans getting a lot of something for nothing, and the media focuses on them versus the people paying 2K a month for what amounts to catastrophic insurance.
    People got their nipples twisted over “pregnancy is a pre-existing condition! ROWR THEY HATE WOMEN”. Yeah, because women would get pregnant, run to get insurance after they had been knocked up, and it was legitimately classified as a pre-existing condition.
    As I have said before:
    You were born with spinal bifida: Covered by insurance (as it is not a pre-existing condition, in the insurance sense of the term)
    You got cancer and you didn’t have health insurance: Not covered by insurance (as it was a pre-existing condition)
    Its like if you could drive around without auto insurance and then, when you get in the crash, you could call up GEICO or whoever and say “YEAH YOU GOTTA COVER ME”. It’s gonna drive prices up for everyone.
    Same thing with women’s health. Yeah, women are more expensive to cover, simply because of biology. Yet this was sexist or something so, rabble rabble rabble, insurers had to cover a host of procedures by law that only apply to women. I never heard anyone kvetching over the fact I paid more (much more!) than my sister because I was a young man with a sports car, but the fact that women need ob/gyn apparently needed federal intervention.

  120. Eric Newhill,
    I don’t know if a non-Alawi ruled Syria would guarantee religious tolerance. It certainly wouldn’t if the the jihadis were allowed to come to power.
    Lebanon has more than tasted the fruits of religious conflict. I was involved in the heart of that for a short time. My guess is that they do not want to taste that bitter fruit again. Hezbollah is much more interconfessional than most people realize. I think they will lead the way.
    The crusades I refer to are the northern crusades largely fought by the Teutonic Order (The Order of Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem) ostensibly to convert the remaining pagan Europeans. The Lithuanians, the last pagan land in Europe, welcomed a Tartar migration twice, the first while they were both pagans, the second after the Tartars converted to Islam. I wrote about them before.
    I’m with you on the value of Trump hearing from all sides.


  122. Eric Newhill says:

    If our host permits it, here is something written about why the ACA is failing by a guy who has worked in medical departments for many years in healthcare insurance and currently works on the ACA for one of the big carriers, me. I fail to see how big insurance companies are the problem. I always hear that it is that they take profits. Does no one listen when it is stated that they are *losing* money on the ACA? How else is it imagined that big insurance (or even big pharma) is destroying the ACA? I see no validity to such so called “analyses”.
    Death Spiral: Raising premiums on the ACA (Obamacare) will only serve to increase the adverse selection that has plagued the program from inception. The more premiums increase the more the people willing to pay the higher premium will be those who know they will be utilizing expensive services *that cost in excess of what they are paying in premium*. So the risk and cost increases; ergo, next year, if the ACA is still with us, premiums will have to increase yet again. Damned if you raise the premiums/damned if you don’t.
    The program was ill conceived in its incentive structure. We, economists working in health care insurance, knew this all along. The idea that healthy young people would join the risk pool to offset the cost of those with pre-existing chronic expensive conditions had no basis in reality; at least not any reality populated with rational actors. It can only be described as ivory tower elitist magical thinking. Why? Because, obviously, the young and healthy are both the least likely to be able to afford health care insurance and the least likely to reap any benefit from it, if they could afford it. Furthermore, the penalty for not having insurance is far less than the cost of insurance. A rational actor asks, “Why should I pay $7,000 a year (or more) when the penalty is only a few hundred $s?”. A rational actor also realizes that if she comes down with a minor illness, the cost of paying out-of-pocket will be far less than the cost of being insured. Worse, a rational actor can easily figure out that, with pre-existing conditions not barring one from obtaining insurance, there is no need to maintain coverage. One can simply sign up for insurance if and when one becomes ill enough that the cost of coverage is less than the cost of the medical services that will rendered.
    At the end of the day, people that are paying to be covered are those who know they will be very expensive. In actuarial/economic circles this is known as both “moral hazard” and “adverse selection”. Both are cryptonite to insurance carriers. We work hard to avoid both and now the federal government has foisted it upon us. Private companies are not – and cannot be – ATM machines for people needing expensive healthcare. So we raise premiums. We are still losing money on the ACA and the company I work for is the last big carrier to include ACA products in its line.
    One way to fix the ACA would be to get the young and healthy into it. I don’t know how, though. Where would they get the money? Perhaps the federal government could subsidize them. Where would the feds get the money? Maybe the feds could stop funding Al Qaeda groups, nation building for Muslims that hate us regardless and drop other similarly wasteful programs that are also based on magical ivory tower thinking. Another remedy is to have citizens employed in good paying jobs. Then they can have traditional employment based insurance and, the self employed, could purchase an affordable ACA product with high deductibles/low premium. They’d be able to afford the deductible amounts because the economy is doing well. The remaining few poor would be on Medicaid. People born with serious chronic conditions could be on Medicare.
    I believe that when Trump drains the swamp and brings a more reality based/less idiological, more business-like focus to DC, that it may be possible to get a few of these items worked out. Here’s to hope and change. Cheers.

  123. Tyler says:

    Its all about nightcore style tunes now. Like I tell the guys at the work gym: If you wanna look like you belong in a gay nightclub, you gotta listen to gay disco music.

  124. different clue says:

    If you are an American College Graduate, then why so many mis-spelled words?

  125. readerOfTeaLeaves says:

    Health insurance is not a typical ‘market commodity’.
    If you buy a new watch, I don’t automatically get a new watch.
    In contrast, if you get the flu, and I am in the waiting room near you, my odds of getting the flu just went up markedly.
    Given the infectious, communicable, nature of many illnesses, it’s smart to cover everyone — the more people who can stop flu before they infect 10 other people, the better.
    Meanwhile, please stop conflating auto insurance with medical insurance; you are not making a coherent argument. Your sister’s ovaries have zilch to do with the way your auto insurance premiums are calculated. Nada.

  126. BillWade says:

    Opinions? Aye yai yai, polls are supposed to be scientific and at least somewhat accurate. I believe someone said, “lies repeated often enough become facts”, Goebbels maybe? My eyesight isn’t what it used to be but I don’t need all CAPS, thank you.

  127. Cee says:

    A little humor from Lionel Nation before tonight

  128. different clue says:

    Pacifica Advocate,
    Senator SecState Clinton lost a lot of votes here in Great Lakestan when she said that “when” elected, she would put her husband in charge of the Economic Recovery Plan. That brought back bitter memories of NAFTA, WTO Membership, MFN for China, etc. She was clearly signalling that she supported Forced Trade and would support more Forced Trade Agreements full of hidden favors for the anti-national Corporate Globalonial Plantationlords.
    I perhaps could have tolerated the thought of Mister Bill as First Golfer . . . but not First Economy Czar. She lost any hope of my vote right there with that statement.

  129. different clue says:

    Eric Newhill,
    I don’t get out much and I haven’t met any real live Sanderistas out here.
    I am disappointed to hear that the ones you met there are into the Pink Kitty Cap level of things.
    And yet . . . just as I voted for Trump despite some Republican beliefs and goals I don’t like, if a Newer Deal Wing (or whole Party) emerges separate and apart from the mainstream Democrats, I will vote for it despite the Pink Kittystuff in order to get the Newer Dealery.
    I hope that the Sanderists and the Tantrummers are at least partially two different groups of people with only some overlap but not total congruence. I think an acid test political science experiment may be forming up in your State of New York. I am reading here and there that the Clinton Restorations are plotting to run Chelsea for the Senate Seat currently occupied by Gilibrand when she retires. The Pink Kitty Cap “happy Sanderses” may end up voting for Chelsea. The Never Clinton “bitter berners” will not vote for Chelsea. If Chelsea ends up running for Senate from New York, you will see if there are any bitter berners who are not happy tantrummers.

  130. readerOfTeaLeaves says:

    Completely agree that: “The program was ill conceived in its incentive structure. We, economists working in health care insurance, knew this all along.” Everyone that I have talked with about this agrees. But then, the people that I talk with also agree that everyone, including young people, need to be covered, and that if we got out of expensive wars, a whole lot of things could be paid for.
    ‘The best laid plans,’ and etc.
    However, at least after decades, someone had a plan.
    Not a good enough plan, and not going after Pharma’s ability to astronomically raise prices after buying out patents, but still… progress.
    I think this person makes some absolutely legitimate points, and I’ve heard every one of them more times than I can count.

  131. “Something that I find troubling is that there is no Islamic majority country in the world that offers protections to religious minorities.”
    There’s at least one: Syria.

  132. Eric Newhill says:

    Good. I’m glad you think I make sense. You still didn’t answer my question about how big insurance companies are destroying the ACA.
    Now, I said that ceasing to invest in nation building other countries would free up some money that could be used on healthcare, but not to provide it for free to everyone. I meant it could be used to provide care for a few that can’t afford it; not everyone. The US spends about $1.2 trillion a year on healthcare (about 17% of GDP). We do not spend that much on nation building – even during the 2001 – 2012 period. We did, however, spend enough to cover the young people that were supposed to enter into the ACA but didn’t. Maybe. The tweak would have to be much more complicated and would have to be based on actuarial science; not politics.
    Also, the problem is not people getting the flu or other public health concerns that raise. That is a specious argument. My team in the data all day every day and my work is concerned with what is driving cost. Once identified it goes to the appropriate department. Demographic/epidemiological issues go Pricing, provider issues go to contracting, fraud and abuse goes to the unit that handles that, medically inappropriate treatment goes to utilization management and the Medical Directors, emerging issues in treatment practices. My team touches it all.
    The ACA introduced something we’d never seen before, which was people signing up, getting treatment, then dropping insurance and repeating as necessary. That’s the killer. IMO, the ACA was either designed by idiots or by people that are so deeply against the insurance model that they somehow wanted to create a political crisis around it. I think it was the more latter with a smattering of the former. They failed. They failed because most people don’t care about the ACA. People have jobs, they have insurance through their employer. they don’t have a job, they have insurance through Medicaid or, if 65+ or with certain chronic conditions, Medicare. The ACA is a tempest in a teapot that is, as Tyler says, of concern to a small group of very loud people.
    What the loud people want is free healthcare. they don’t want insurance. Insurance means you agree to pay into a pool in case you ever experience a prohibitively expensive situation. Your car insurance doesn’t pay for new tires or washer blades. That’s on you. And healthcare insurance shouldn’t pay for your check ups and sore throats. But people walking around with expensive smart phones think that saving a few hundred bucks to pay for the little health related things is unfair.
    If you want universal socialized healthcare provision – and I’m sure you do – then you are asking that everyone accept a mediocre version of what they currently receive in the US. Why? Because that’s is how the Europeans and others do it for less and for all. You don’t get the Cadillac. You get the Ford Taurus. For the few people that are walking or driving a Ford Pinto (the old exploding one), that’s an improvement, for the majority that are driving the Cadillac, it’s a big step down. Personally, I think the Taurus is fine and probably where we need to go, but that is because I am much better informed than most. I think there is a lot of waste in the US around items where the marginal benefit does not = the marginal cost. But try explaining that to all the Cadillac drivers. And try to explain it while fighting the Doctors and purveyors of Cadillacs.
    The problem with socialism is that it assumes humans will forgo acting in their own self interest.
    The insurance companies have nothing to do with any of this. That is just your knee jerk anti-capitalism talking.

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