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 Post subject: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Thu 12 Jan , 2017 2:35 am 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
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Did anyone see this, um, event? The only word that seems to suit it is "fiasco." Or perhaps "circus"?

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2017/0111/Did-you-catch-Trump-s-press-conference-It-was-a-real-production

Quote:
Trump ran his press conference like a show, with applause from staffers and multiple speakers. He flattered and barked at the assembled journalists in turn, at one point shouting down a CNN reporter who was trying to ask a question.


Quote:
. A more restrained PEOTUS was not in evidence. He acted as he always has, with colorful asides, snipes at rivals, and lots of bombastic adjectives. Meet the new Trump, same as the old.


Quote:
... Trump staffers and officials were sprinkled around the media assembled in Trump Tower, hemming reporters in. Their applause at key moments was surprising to anyone used to the quieter combativeness of a typical White House press conference.


So much for hopes that President Trump might be more palatable than his persona during the campaign.

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That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Last edited by aninkling on Mon 26 Jun , 2017 12:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Thu 12 Jan , 2017 9:24 am 
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aninkling wrote:
So much for hopes that President Trump might be more palatable than his persona during the campaign.

Did anyone actually hope that?

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Thu 12 Jan , 2017 2:39 pm 

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Yes. His first post-election speech - the coming together one - was good, and there were some signs of reasonableness, like the meeting with Al Gore about climate change, all of his contacts with President Obama (including the promise to at least consider keeping parts of Obama's legislation), and his disapproval of Congressional Republicans when they tried to get rid of the ethics oversight group. Not to mention that people's behavior is sometimes different when they are trying to win something. Trump is such a showman that it's been hard to know what's underneath.

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It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Thu 12 Jan , 2017 2:50 pm 
A green apple painted red
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I know this - when a person behaves like a total asshole, it's because they ARE a total asshole. It is not in the nature of someone who is not a total asshole to act like one.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Fri 13 Jan , 2017 4:25 am 
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Ugh. :(

And I am trying to decide if I'm going to drive to Columbus (1.5 hours away) this Sunday to march in the Women's March. I can't make the one in DC, and they're having this one the weekend before for those of us who can't and to send off those who can. I suspect that, in the end, I won't go because I don't have anyone to go with and the one person who would go with me is not someone I want to spend that kind of time with. So yeah.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sat 21 Jan , 2017 9:35 pm 

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Well, Lali, it looks like the women's march was a success, at least in terms of turnout. Apparently, they've turned it into a rally because there were too many people to march.

So far, it looks like Trump's budget is standard Republican fare - eliminate ("privatize") the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the National Endowment for the Arts, increase spending for the military (why, exactly, considering Trump's isolationist agenda?). What's really worrisome, at least to me, is that he's already shut down all tweets from the National Park Service because they had a couple of unflattering tweets comparing the number of people at his inauguration to Obama's. The Park Service seems to rely on tweets for a lot of things, including emergency communications, so that wasn't trivial. They're back up again after an apology from the Park Service, but it looks like Trump's thin skin is going to permeate everything. The Trump administration has also eliminated pages on climate change, LGBT and something else I can't remember from the White House pages.

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That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sat 21 Jan , 2017 11:18 pm 
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Apparently there was a protest in Ottawa, too, but I only heard about it after it was underway.

Edit: You can read about the Ottawa protest here - and meet Doris Lessard, a 94-year-old who's annoyed that she still has to protest against the same issues that she's been protesting since the 1960's. Go Doris! :horse:

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sun 22 Jan , 2017 5:41 am 
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There were marches on all continents (though the one on Antarctica was rather short to be called a march - just a quick stroll down the beach). I participated in the Oakland California march, 60,000 to 80,000 people, well behaved, well spoken, well meaning. I just hope they keep the glow for the next few years.

EDIT to update: Now they are saying it was 100,000.

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Last edited by laureanna on Sun 22 Jan , 2017 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sun 22 Jan , 2017 9:52 am 
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:Q There was a march in Antarctica? Cool!

Check this out too: some of the best signs and slogans from marches around the world

Quote:
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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sun 22 Jan , 2017 4:54 pm 

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I'm afraid those types of signs are just what I didn't like about these marches . To make a real change, a protest needs to have a clear, concrete goal (e.g., don't pass a law restricting abortion), and a way to know that you've achieved that goal. Trump isn't going to leave the White House, and his tweeting is a trivial matter. (sure, some of his tweets show he's an ass, but you can personally be an ass and still pass good laws). I don't know that these unfocused feel-good marches with vague goals are likely to make much of an impact. My biggest hope is that their size might make Congress think twice about passing certain types of laws. I have my doubts that they'll have much effect on what Trump does.


btw, there's a news story about the shutdown of the Interior Dept's tweets and suppression of dissent on the CS Monitor today. Yesterday, the information had mostly originated on a tech site.
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2017/0121/What-just-happened-with-the-Interior-Department-s-Twitter-account
Unfortunately, this and the seeding of Trump's first press conference with clapping staffers seem to be heading in an ugly direction.

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It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sun 22 Jan , 2017 5:57 pm 
A green apple painted red
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Eerily familiar, having grown up in the Soviet days and watching as Putin crushed the last vestiges of free press in Russia.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sun 22 Jan , 2017 8:00 pm 

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I don't doubt it, and I suspect he'd love to be able to run the government under his absolute control, like his companies. But I think (and hope) the situation is a little different, and he may be in for some frustration. The U.S. press may now mostly be under the control of a few corporations, but so far, they haven't shown themselves very friendly to Trump.

And the Bush presidency was also known for stifling dissent from government employees and suppressing information.

But hey, we're getting a new holiday for patriotism, yippee, hooray. Though I'm not sure the people whose mortgage insurance taxes were about to be cut under the Obama administration will find much to cheer about. Amazing, how fast Trump can move from crowd-pleasing rhetoric about helping the average American, to cancelling something that would.

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It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Sun 22 Jan , 2017 8:31 pm 
A green apple painted red
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We get a holiday? I missed that.

I hope the freedom of press prevails - so far the press is resisting but it's been ONE day. But the playbook is blindingly, achingly familiar, although I sincerely hope that Trump won't go the Putin route of assassinating and imprisoning dissenting journalists and bloggers.

P.S.: regarding the protests - I haven't read any of the linked papers yet and I don't know what they say, but this tweet thread links to some academic works on the effectiveness of protests, starting here https://twitter.com/zeitzoff/status/822896245744209921

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Fri 27 Jan , 2017 10:34 pm 

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Republicans have already introduced a bill that would permanently ban all federal funding for abortions. It also seems to be aimed at anyone who gets health insurance through Medicaid or subsidized coverage on the exchanges, as well as small employers who offer health insurance coverage, and allow abortions under that plan.

https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/7/text

Quote:
§ 301. Prohibition on funding for abortions

“No funds authorized or appropriated by Federal law, and none of the funds in any trust fund to which funds are authorized or appropriated by Federal law, shall be expended for any abortion.

Ҥ 302. Prohibition on funding for health benefits plans that cover abortion


“None of the funds authorized or appropriated by Federal law, and none of the funds in any trust fund to which funds are authorized or appropriated by Federal law, shall be expended for health benefits coverage that includes coverage of abortion.

Quote:
(2) DISALLOWANCE OF SMALL EMPLOYER HEALTH INSURANCE EXPENSE CREDIT FOR PLAN WHICH INCLUDES COVERAGE FOR ABORTION.—Subsection (h) of section 45R of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended—
(A) IN GENERAL.—The term ‘qualified health plan’ does not include any health plan that includes coverage for abortions (other than any abortion or treatment described in section 307 or 308 of title 1, United States Code).

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It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Fri 27 Jan , 2017 11:10 pm 
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Yikes - that was fast.

What does "introduced" mean in the U.S.? Is it likely to be passed?

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Mon 30 Jan , 2017 1:22 pm 

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Jude, it has to pass both the House of Representatives and the Senate and be signed into law by President Trump. All of which seem very possible. And if passed into law, it's more difficult to undo than executive orders (by the president), like that stupid tennis match where Republican presidents since Reagan ban foreign aid to any organization that funds abortions (even if it's a tiny fraction of what they do), and Democratic presidents undo it. I've been meaning to find that list of organizations, so I can see who's on it and send a donation.

Of course, this rather pales in light of Trump's executive order on people entering the US from Muslim countries. Unbelievable. Can't wait to see what chaos the retaliatory measures cause for US citizens.

Edit: Story on some of the consequences of Trump's oh-so-brilliant travel ban for places like hospitals, labs and universities:
https://www.wired.com/2017/01/trumps-muslim-ban-isnt-just-inhumane-itll-make-america-dumber/

AND there's this:
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2017/0129/Trump-taps-Breitbart-publisher-Steve-Bannon-to-be-right-hand-man-on-national-security

Quote:
In an executive order the president signed on Saturday, Donald Trump promoted his chief strategist, Steve Bannon, to a permanent member of the Principals Committee, which advises the president on national security and foreign affairs. In the same swoop of the pen, Mr. Trump downgraded the influence of the DNI and the Joint Chiefs chairman. The intelligence and military leaders will attend only meetings “where issues pertaining to their responsibilities and expertise are to be discussed.”


Frankly, this is getting scary.

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It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Last edited by aninkling on Mon 30 Jan , 2017 6:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Mon 30 Jan , 2017 5:33 pm 
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The scary part is not the ban, although that is bad enough. The scary part is that this represents an attempt by the Executive branch to appropriate the right to detain anyone regardless of what the Judicial branch says. If this is allowed to stand, people who don't care because they do not belong to a currently targeted group will find out how wrong they are.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Mon 30 Jan , 2017 6:27 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
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Quote:
The scary part is that this represents an attempt by the Executive branch to appropriate the right to detain anyone regardless of what the Judicial branch says.

Sadly, I think previous administrations already did their best to erode judicial protections, with the secret watch lists, etc. Not to mention sending people to other countries to be "interrogated" (AKA tortured) outside US law. But Trump has certainly taken things to new heights. Apparently, he didn't even bother having Department of Justice vet the executive order first. And when CBP is actually defying court orders, something has gone very wrong indeed. Still, I've never seen the judicial branch react this fast to counteract an executive order, across multiple states. I'm hoping that some airports will soon be seeing contempt of court orders.
btw, I've even heard rumors of student visas being revoked for no reason, a week before the order was even signed.

Personally, though, I'm finding the changes to the Principals Committee the scariest. Just because it's such an obvious statement of who holds the influence in this administration - they're not even trying to hide it any more.

A small silver lining: Trump has apparently reached majority disapproval in record time - 8 days. It took Clinton, the previous record holder, 573 days.
http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/poll-president-donald-trump-disapproval-rating-record

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It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Mon 30 Jan , 2017 6:53 pm 
A green apple painted red
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I agree, inkling. The current situation is definitely building on the actions of previous administrations, including both George W and Obama.

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 Post subject: Re: Election
PostPosted: Mon 30 Jan , 2017 10:14 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
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Trump is producing some strange bedfellows. :)
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Foreign-Policy/2017/0130/Some-conservatives-chime-in-Trump-immigrant-ban-is-not-American

Quote:
Normally, getting the likes of the ACLU, the Koch brothers, Chuck Schumer, John McCain, high-tech moguls, and some evangelical groups to agree on anything might seem like Mission Impossible.

But President Trump’s hastily imposed orders – temporarily suspending refugee resettlement and issuing 90-day travel bans for residents of seven Middle Eastern and African countries – have spawned a diverse opposition and a strikingly unified outcry of “This is not who we are.”


There are a few people affected at my workplace, and the university president has warned people from affected countries to consider carefully before traveling out of the U.S.

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It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


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