Recently in Politics Category

Now this will be fun to see

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From The Washington Times:

DHS preparing to arrest leaders of sanctuary cities
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen confirmed Tuesday that her department has asked federal prosecutors to see if they can lodge criminal charges against sanctuary cities that refuse to cooperate with federal deportation efforts.

“The Department of Justice is reviewing what avenues may be available,” Ms. Nielsen told the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Her confirmation came after California’s new sanctuary law went into effect Jan. 1, severely restricting cooperation the state or any of its localities could offer.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director Tom Homan says those policies put his officers and local communities at more risk because they have to arrest illegal immigrants out in the community.

Mr. Homan told The Washington Times last July that he wanted to see local officials charged as complicit in human smuggling if they shielded illegal immigrants through sanctuary policies.

The states have no authority here - immigration is defined in Article One, Paragraph eight, Section four of our Constitution.

So true

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From A. F. Branco:


FEMA and hazard mitigation

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It is easy to criticize the Federal Government for being a bloated inefficient leviathan but some agencies are actually very well run. FEMA for example. From the National Institute of Building Sciences:

Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves: 2017 Interim Report
The Institute's project team looked at the results of 23 years of federally funded mitigation grants provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and found mitigation funding can save the nation $6 in future disaster costs, for every $1 spent on hazard mitigation.

In addition, the project team looked at scenarios that focus on designing new buildings to exceed provisions of the 2015 model building codes. The 2017 Interim Report demonstrates that investing in hazard mitigation measures to exceed select requirements of the 2015 International Codes (I-Codes), the model building codes developed by the International Code Council (ICC), can save the nation $4 for every $1 spent.

Win/win - the full report can be downloaded from this page: Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves: 2017 Interim Report Download Form

What to do with the United Nations

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A modest proposal - swiped from Mostly Cajun:


Trump colludes with Russia

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You bet - from the UK Telegraph:

Putin thanks Trump for intelligence that prevented St Petersburg terror attack
Russian President Vladimir Putin called US President Donald Trump on Sunday to thank the Central Intelligence Agency for relaying information that lead to the arrest of several individuals since Friday suspected of plotting terrorist attacks in St. Petersburg.

According to the Kremlin, the information shared by the CIA “helped to track, identify and detain a group of terrorists preparing to set off explosions in St. Petersburg’s Kazan Cathedral, as well as in other public areas,” Interfax news agency reported.

Mr Putin asked Mr Trump to relay his thanks to the director of the CIA and the intelligence officers who first received the information.

Two people doing what they do best - leading their respective nations.

From the wonderful muck-rakers at Page Six:

Bizarre film of Omarosa surfaces amid White House exit
As Omarosa Manigault Newman exits her job in the White House, a bizarre video showing her less, er, stateswomanly side has emerged.

A pop-culture polymath sent Page Six a link to “Soul Sistahs,” an ultra-camp, hyper-kitsch, uber-low-budget 10-minute sci-fi short film.

While the plot is virtually incomprehensible, as far as we can tell it focuses on an intergalactic yenta in a housecoat who kidnaps Omarosa in an attempt to steal Donald Trump’s hair as part of a difficult-to-understand get-rich-quick scheme.

The mini-flick was made back in 2006 — two years after Omarosa shot to fame on Trump’s NBC show “The Apprentice.”

She was  the director of communications for the White House Office of Public Liaison - the New York Times has an article on her rise and fall.

Quote of the month - Thomas Jefferson

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"Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter."
-Thomas Jefferson

A return to traditional values - Poland

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This will be interesting to follow - from England's Catholic Herald:

Poland to phase out Sunday shopping by 2020
Polish MPs have approved a bill that will phase out Sunday shopping by 2020.

Initially proposed by trade unions, the idea received the support of the ruling conservative Law and Justice Party, who want to allow workers to spend more time with their families.

The Sejm, the lower house of Poland’s parliament, passed the bill by 254 to 156 to restrict Sunday shopping to the first and last Sunday of the month until the end of 2018, only on the last Sunday in the month in 2019, and to ban it totally starting in 2020. It will still be permitted, however, on the Sundays before major holidays such as Christmas. Some bakeries and online shops will also be exempt.

Poland's Sejm is roughly equivalent to our House of Representatives - the peole are elected by popular vote and are there to represent the general population. A victory of 254 to 156 is a pretty forceful statement.

This will be fun to see - from Reuters:

Trump: 'I don't see a deal' with Democrats on keeping government open
U.S. President Donald Trump said he will meet on Tuesday with the Democratic leaders of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi, to discuss keeping the government open but cited differences with them.

“Meeting with “Chuck and Nancy” today about keeping government open and working. Problem is they want illegal immigrants flooding into our Country unchecked, are weak on Crime and want to substantially RAISE Taxes. I don’t see a deal!” Trump said in a Twitter post.

Cue the sound of the soft popping as liberal heads explode. The thing though is that this was what he campaigned on, this is what he was promising and he gave them a year to deal with it. They did not - either willfully blind or assuming that they had equal executive powers (stupid either way) - and now it is time to pay the piper...

China and North Korea

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From Associated Press:

China sending envoy to North Korea following Trump visit
Following President Donald Trump’s visit to Beijing, China said Wednesday that it would send a high-level special envoy to North Korea amid an extended chill in relations between the neighbors over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons and missile programs.

Song Tao, the head of China’s ruling Communist Party’s International Department, will travel to Pyongyang on Friday to report on outcomes of the party’s national congress held last month, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

Xinhua said Song, as president and party leader Xi Jinping’s special envoy, would carry out a “visit” in addition to delivering his report, but gave no details about his itinerary or meetings. It also made no mention of Trump’s trip to Beijing or the North’s weapons programs, although Trump has repeatedly called on Beijing to do more to use its influence to pressure Pyongyang into altering its behavior.

China's International Department is their equivalent to our State Department and they are sending the top honcho. Now that is sending a message.

President Trump on his Asian trip

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A bit long but a great speech:

Transcript here: Remarks by President Trump on His Trip to Asia

Trey Gowdy meets Jeff Sessions

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Great give and take - I would not want to be on the receiving end of Mr. Gowdy's inquiry.

Great news from President Trump

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A very long way from Hillary's "what difference does it make" - from The White House:

Statement by President Donald J. Trump on the Apprehension of Mustafa al-Imam for His Alleged Role in the September 11, 2012 Attacks in Benghazi, Libya Resulting in the Deaths of Four Americans
Yesterday, on my orders, United States forces captured Mustafa al-Imam in Libya. Because of this successful operation, al-Imam will face justice in the United States for his alleged role in the September 11, 2012 attacks in Benghazi, which resulted in the deaths of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, Glen Doherty, Sean Smith, and Tyrone Woods—four brave Americans who were serving our country.

To the families of these fallen heroes: I want you to know that your loved ones are not forgotten, and they will never be forgotten.

Our memory is deep and our reach is long, and we will not rest in our efforts to find and bring the perpetrators of the heinous attacks in Benghazi to justice.

I want to thank our law enforcement, prosecutors, intelligence community, and military personnel for their extraordinary efforts in gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, and tracking down fugitives associated with the attack, capturing them, and delivering them to the United States for prosecution.

The United States will continue to support our Libyan partners to ensure that ISIS and other terrorist groups do not use Libya as a safe haven for attacks against United States citizens or interests, Libyans, and others.

Libya’s long-term stability and security are linked to its ability to form a unified government and military, and we encourage all Libyans to support the ongoing reconciliation process facilitated by the United Nations and to work together to build a peaceful and stable country.

And Obama's and Hillary's response when this happened on their watch?





A timeline of the Fusion GPS dossier

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Good investigative reporting by Chuck Ross at The Daily Caller:

FINALLY, A Definitive Timeline Showing When Clinton, DNC Started The Russian Dossier
There has been much confusion in the media — and thereby, the public — about who funded the infamous Trump dossier. Some outlets have incorrectly reported that Republicans began financing the dossier before the Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee took over last Spring.

But that is incorrect. Democrats are solely responsible for the dossier, which was passed around by their research firm, Fusion GPS, to Beltway reporters and select lawmakers during the heat of the presidential campaign.

Here is the definitive timeline of how it all transpired.

Oct. 2015: It was reported late Friday that the Washington Free Beacon, a conservative website funded by GOP mega-donor Paul Singer, hired Fusion GPS to investigate Trump. Free Beacon’s editor said Friday that the research was standard opposition research and that it was not tied to the dossier work that would follow several months later. It is not clear what, if anything, Singer knew about Free Beacon’s hiring of Fusion. The hedge fund manager was Florida Sen. Marco Rubio’s biggest backer.

Much much more at the site. Chuck's work forms the definitive timeline of what happened when and who was involved. Runs through 2015 to October 24th, 2017 - lots of links to corroborating evidence.

Great news from Catalonia

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From Yahoo/Agence France Presse:

Catalan parliament declares independence from Spain
Catalan lawmakers voted Friday to declare independence from Spain but Madrid immediately moved to quash the breakaway bid in a sharp escalation of a crisis that has caused jitters in secession-wary Europe.

And the decision?

The Catalan resolution, which Madrid says the region cannot legally execute, was passed by 70 votes to 10.

There were two abstentions, but dozens of opposition MPS walked out before the secret ballot in the 135-seat assembly, where 68 votes constitute a majority.

Looks like We The People of all nations are not wanting large centralized governments full of unelected bureaucrats and instead, wanting localized small governments and sovereign pride.

Not so fast - Kennedy document release

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Well darn it. Not surprising though - from The Washington Post:

Trump delays release of hundreds of remaining JFK assassination documents, bowing to national security concerns
President Trump delayed the release of hundreds of classified documents related to the John F. Kennedy assassination Thursday evening, bowing to pressure from the CIA, FBI and other federal agencies still seeking to keep some final secrets from the nearly 54-year-old investigation.

The president allowed the immediate release of 2,800 records by the National Archives, following a last-minute scramble to meet a 25-year legal deadline. Following lobbying by national security officials, the remaining documents will be reviewed during a 180-day period. In a memo released by the White House, Trump said: “I am ordering today that the veil finally be lifted. At the same time, executive departments and agencies have proposed to me that certain information should continue to be redacted because of national security, law enforcement, and foreign affairs concerns. I have no choice — today — but to accept those redactions rather than allow potentially irreversible harm to our nation’s security. ”

Come on now - they have had 25 years to go over the documents and determine which could be released and which could not - why the scramble now? This is only going to fuel more conspiracy theories. My favorite is that LBJ had him assassinated.

Yes - Ted Cruz

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He was my first choice for President by a long shot. From The Hill:

Cruz on GOP-Trump feud: 'Shut up and do your job'
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) is warning his GOP colleagues to stop fighting with President Trump and focus on passing the party's agenda.

"It's like you’re back in junior high. ... We've got a job to do, damn it, and so all of this nonsense, I got nothing to say on it. Everyone shut up and do your job, is my view," Cruz told conservative radio host Mark Davis on Wednesday.

Exactly. I would love to see him run in 2020 or 2024.

From The New York Times:

Trump Says He Will Release Final Set of Documents on Kennedy Assassination
President Trump has decided to release a final batch of thousands of classified government documents related to the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy, Mr. Trump announced in a tweet on Saturday morning.

“Subject to the receipt of further information, I will be allowing, as President, the long blocked and classified JFK FILES to be opened,” Mr. Trump said on Twitter.

Cue the conspiracy theories in 3... 2... 1...

UPDATE: Found the video

Things are getting interesting. The Republicans have won the Presidency, the House and the Senate but they are still proving to be ineffectual RINOs - Republicans In Name Only.

As their nemesis gets ready - from Real Clear Politics:

Bannon Declares War On GOP Establishment: "We're Coming After All Of Them And We're Going To Win"
On Monday's edition of Hannity, Breitbart executive chairman and former Trump adviser Steve Bannon talked about his plan to challenge every Republican Senator up for re-election in 2018 in the primary, except Sen. Ted Cruz. Bannon said Republican incumbents have committed "economic hate crimes" against the "forgotten man."

Bannon said he is declaring "war" on the Republican establishment and those that don't back what President Trump ran on. He said there is a "new game in town" and promised to "cut off the oxygen" to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and stop his fundraising for establishment candidates. Bannon said any person running for the Senate in 2018 that wants his support must oppose McConnell as the Republican Leader.

Heh - about time. President Trump gave them more than enough time to see if they would work with him or continue to support the deep state. They let their affiliations be known so now it is time to get rid of them and bring in people who will be responsive to the wishes of We The People.

Much more at the site - a good read. Time to make a big bowl of popcorn, sit back and watch the fur fly...

The whole thing is worth watching - this is what leadership looks like:

At 4:00:

It was in the same period, exactly 70 years ago, that the United States developed the Marshall Plan to help restore Europe. Those three beautiful pillars -- they’re pillars of peace, sovereignty, security, and prosperity.

The Marshall Plan was built on the noble idea that the whole world is safer when nations are strong, independent, and free. As President Truman said in his message to Congress at that time, “Our support of European recovery is in full accord with our support of the United Nations. The success of the United Nations depends upon the independent strength of its members.”

At 30:15: he starts talking about Cuba and Venezuela as a poster-boys for socialism:

That is why in the Western Hemisphere, the United States has stood against the corrupt and destabilizing regime in Cuba and embraced the enduring dream of the Cuban people to live in freedom. My administration recently announced that we will not lift sanctions on the Cuban government until it makes fundamental reforms.

We have also imposed tough, calibrated sanctions on the socialist Maduro regime in Venezuela, which has brought a once thriving nation to the brink of total collapse.

The socialist dictatorship of Nicolas Maduro has inflicted terrible pain and suffering on the good people of that country. This corrupt regime destroyed a prosperous nation by imposing a failed ideology that has produced poverty and misery everywhere it has been tried. To make matters worse, Maduro has defied his own people, stealing power from their elected representatives to preserve his disastrous rule.

The Venezuelan people are starving and their country is collapsing. Their democratic institutions are being destroyed. This situation is completely unacceptable and we cannot stand by and watch.

And at 33:22 he drops the bomb:

The problem in Venezuela is not that socialism has been poorly implemented, but that socialism has been faithfully implemented.  (Applause.)  From the Soviet Union to Cuba to Venezuela, wherever true socialism or communism has been adopted, it has delivered anguish and devastation and failure.  Those who preach the tenets of these discredited ideologies only contribute to the continued suffering of the people who live under these cruel systems. 

Excellent speech - The White House has the full transcript here: Remarks by President Trump to the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly

Like I said, this is what leadership looks like. We could use a lot more of it in Washington.

Finally - unemployment benefits

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I remember that when applying for food stamps and other assistance, recipients had to submit proof that they applied for work. Obama removed this requirement in July of 2012.

Sounds like President Trump is restoring some sanity - from The Daily Caller:

HHS Restores Work Requirement For Welfare Financial Assistance
The Department of Health and Human Services announced Wednesday the restoration of work participation requirements under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.

The requirements were done away with in 2012 by the Obama administration. HHS now urges states to submit an application for exemptions from the established work participation criteria for welfare financial aid.

“Reemphasizing the work requirements in the welfare program means once again promoting gainful employment and economic independence as goals for every family,” said Acting Assistant Secretary for Children and Families Steven Wagner in a statement. “The waiver option offered by the Obama administration is being replaced today by an expectation that work should always be encouraged as a condition for receiving welfare.”

Makes a lot of sense. I am not saying that there should not be a safety net for people - there should. It should not be a free ride though - there should be expectations when this safety net is used. Peolpe need to show personal responsibility for their actions.

Someone gets it right

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Looks like the editor of The Wall Street Journal has seen the light regarding what the paying and reading public want. From The New York Times:

Wall Street Journal Editor Admonishes Reporters Over Trump Coverage
Gerard Baker, the editor in chief of The Wall Street Journal, has faced unease and frustration in his newsroom over his stewardship of the newspaper’s coverage of President Trump, which some journalists there say has lacked toughness and verve.

Some staff members expressed similar concerns on Wednesday after Mr. Baker, in a series of blunt late-night emails, criticized his staff over their coverage of Mr. Trump’s Tuesday rally in Phoenix, describing their reporting as overly opinionated.

“Sorry. This is commentary dressed up as news reporting,” Mr. Baker wrote at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday morning to a group of Journal reporters and editors, in response to a draft of the rally article that was intended for the newspaper’s final edition.

He added in a follow-up, “Could we please just stick to reporting what he said rather than packaging it in exegesis and selective criticism?”

Mic drop.

Tip of the hat to Deplorable Don Surber for the link.

A good look at President Trump

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From Investor's Business Daily:

Donald Trump: The 'Fascist' Who Cuts Taxes And Deregulates
Everybody knows by now that President Trump is a fascist. He's a Nazi just like the white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville, Va., on Aug. 12. We know this because the mainstream media, a host of dimwit celebrities, various Democratic politicians and the highly reputable antifa tell us he is.

What we really know, though, is these groups don't know anything except how to shriek louder and longer than everyone else. A few also well know how to break other people's property and set things that don't belong to them on fire. But they don't know their history, and therefore don't know what they're talking about.

But we're here to help them out, so let's make some comparisons.

First, take a look at taxes. Trump wants to cut them. But the Nazis were no tax-cutters.

The author closes with this wonderful observation:

The self-proclaimed anti-Fascists and Nazi-punchers, as well as their media apologists and political abettors, are also more closely aligned with historical Nazis and Fascists than Trump and his supporters through their devotion to mob violence, identity politics, forced conformity and efforts to silence critics.

What we're seeing, then, is a widespread case of psychological projection. We hope that most of the country recognizes this.


What a wonderful idea - sue for fraud

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From The Washington Times:

Making the case for political fraud
If a political candidate asks you for a donation with a promise that he or she will do some specific act if elected and then fails to do so, should you be able to sue for fraud?

If a contractor offers to build a new deck on your home within a specific time period and then fails to do, so you can sue for nonperformance. Excuses that his competitors were not co-operating, or that all of his workers did not show up, or he wanted to take a vacation, would probably not persuade the judge.

It is well understood that many salespeople and political candidates engage in puffery about what their product does or what they are going to do. But when does puffery go so far as to become fraud?

The first President Bush famously made the statement: “Read my lips, no new taxes,” which he repeated many times. Polls showed that many people voted for him based on his no-new-taxes pledge, and that his defeat for re-election was largely a result of his reneging on that important pledge. President Obama assured the American people many times that his Obamacare legislation would allow you to “keep your own doctor” and reduce insurance premiums. These and his other falsehoods cost his party dearly in the subsequent elections. Both President Bush and President Obama could have kept their word or not made the promises if they had so chosen.

Makes perfect sense to me. Lie to us? We will make it hurt.

Just a few highlights of this Executive Order from The White House:

Fact Sheet: President Donald J. Trump Works to Rebuild America's Infrastructure

MODERNIZING AN OUTDATED SYSTEM: The old system for completing environmental reviews was fragmented, inefficient, and unpredictable to the American people.

REMOVING ROADBLOCKS TO IMPROVED INFRASTRUCTURE: Today, President Donald J. Trump signed an Executive Order Establishing Discipline and Accountability In the Environmental Review and Permitting Process for Infrastructure Projects.

BUILDING ON PAST SUCCESS: President Trump has made infrastructure a priority and has taken action to rebuild America.

A few bullet points from the order:

    • According to a 2014 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, it takes 7 years on average for a complex highway project to go through the entire environmental review process.
    • Rather than allow for a patchwork of agency reviews, this Order implements a One Federal Decision policy under which the lead Federal agency will work with other relevant Federal agencies to complete the environmental reviews and permitting decisions needed for major infrastructure projects.
    • Each agency will sign a joint Record of Decision and all required Federal permits will be issued 90 days later.
    • The order establishes a two-year goal to process environmental documents for major infrastructure projects.
    • Government will get out of the way to allow State and local governments to succeed at meeting their unique challenges.

Finally, some real shovel-ready projects unlike the $787 Billion squandered by our past leader - here, here and here. This is what leadership looks like.

China is getting its knickers in a twist - from China Daily:

Trump asking too much from Beijing on peninsula issue
US President Donald Trump will reportedly sign an executive memorandum on Monday authorizing the US trade representative to determine whether to investigate the allegedly "unfair" Chinese trade practices, which could pave the way for punitive tariffs on Chinese exports.

But it is of critical strategic significance that his administration demonstrates reason and avoids making a rash decision it will soon regret.

Given Trump's transactional approach to foreign affairs, it is impossible to look at the matter without taking into account his increasing disappointment at what he deems as China's failure to bring into line the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. His idea of exploiting trade as a bargaining chip in dealings with China dates back to the campaign trail.

But instead of advancing the United States' interests, politicizing trade will only acerbate the country's economic woes, and poison the overall China-US relationship.

Without China's support, North Korea would fold in a heartbeat (China trade accounts for 90% of the NK GDP). Now that President Trump is applying pressure to China, President Xi is crying foul and saying that it will "poison the overall China-US relationship".

A strong North Korea is a serious detriment to world peace and China could reign it in with a few strokes of a pen - why not do this? Why do they protest so much?

This is what leadership looks like.

Our Korean strategy

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Sounds perfect - from A. F. Branco:


A great idea from Rand Paul

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Some of his ideas are a bit off into fruit-loop territory but when it comes to basic government operation, he is spot-on. From PJ Media:

Paul Urges 'One of the Easiest, Most Common-Sense Steps' to Rein in Government Waste
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is once again pushing legislation aimed at reducing fiscal waste by requiring Congress to regularly review and consider consolidating or eliminating duplicative programs.

The Legislative Performance Review Act would place a four-year expiration date on all new budget authority included in appropriations acts, while requiring regular reviews for continued budget authority for existing programs. If the program’s authorization expires, the legislation would allow for an “orderly,” two-year wind-down.

“As our national debt rapidly closes in on $20 trillion, we should, at the very least, acknowledge that government should not automatically fund programs without regard for performance or continued need,” Paul said in a statement last week. “Passing this bill is one of the easiest, most common-sense steps we can take to make Congress a better steward of the American people’s money.”

The Kentucky lawmaker pointed out how in 2016 the Congressional Budget Office revealed that in the previous decade, on average, “about one-fourth of total discretionary appropriations were provided for programs and activities whose explicit authorizations of appropriations had expired.” The CBO concluded that “$310 billion – about one-quarter of discretionary appropriations in 2016 – was provided for programs and activities whose explicit authorization of appropriations had expired and whose appropriations could be identified.”

Very simple and would go a long way to starving the beast. When did the leader of a bureaucracy ever say: "Our work here is done - let's have a big party and close up shop!"

I like this guy - he gets things done. From the London Daily Mail:

Philippines' Duterte announces 'dead or alive' bounties
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday announced "dead-or-alive" bounties worth $40,000 each for policemen he accused of helping an accused narco-politician, and said he prefered they be killed.

The call for police officers to kill their colleagues is the latest inflammatory comment by Duterte in his controversial drug war, which has claimed thousands of lives, and comes shortly after a meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Duterte made the offer during a speech at national police headquarters, offering two million pesos ($40,000) for an unspecified number of officers who allegedly helped a mayor killed in an anti-drug operation on July 30.

"Each of those policemen carry on their heads now, I am announcing, two million per head and you are free to go on leave (to pursue them)," Duterte told the officers in the audience.

President Duterte was swept into office on just this campaign promise - that he would root out the corruption and drug trade in the Philippines and he is doing just what he promised. Good and good riddance to the drug dealers.

If you can't beat them - politics

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Join them - from FOX News:

West Virginia's Democratic governor to announce party change at Trump rally
West Virginia Democratic Gov. Jim Justice plans to announce at a rally Thursday evening with President Trump that he is changing parties, three Republican sources confirmed to Fox News.

West Virginia is coal country and Trump is bringing back the energy economy - including coal. We are now exporting significant quantities of coal to Europe - in spite of their rhetoric.

From White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders:

From The Wall Street Journal:

Scaramucci Removed as White House Communications Director at Kelly’s Urging
Anthony Scaramucci was removed from his position as White House communications director, just 10 days after his appointment to the post.

Mr. Scaramucci, who is nicknamed “The Mooch,” was removed at the urging of former Marine Corps Gen. John Kelly, who was sworn in as White House chief of staff Monday morning. Mr. Kelly is seeking to impose more discipline in the White House, two administration officials said.

After the swearing-in ceremony—which Mr. Scaramucci attended—Mr. Kelly returned to his office, where he informed Mr. Scaramucci in a one-on-one meeting that he was being forced to resign, a White House official said.

The ouster signaled Mr. Kelly’s authority over a White House that has been plagued by competing factions in the first six months of the Trump administration. President Donald Trump has told Mr. Kelly that all White House officials—including longtime advisers such as chief strategist Steve Bannon and family members such as son-in-law Jared Kushner —will report directly to the chief of staff, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said at Monday’s news briefing.

Good - General Kelly is exactly who is needed. Mooch has close ties with too many banksters and crony capitalist types. I have zero problem with anyone wanting to make a dollar. I do have a problem if they try to destabilize the playing field to prevent anyone else from even competing. It is healthy competition that makes things so great for us consumers - someone will always come along with the better mousetrap.

A great man for the job

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From Radio Iowa:

Iowan Sam Clovis nominated to be USDA undersecretary
President Trump has nominated an Iowan who was a top policy adviser on Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign to serve as the USDA Undersecretary for research, education and economics. Sam Clovis, formerly of Hinton, Iowa, has been working in the USDA since Trump took office, serving as a liaison to the White House.

“This may be the last rodeo I ever have. I can’t believe I’ve had this experience,” Clovis said a year ago during an appearance in Iowa. “But I will tell you this: I can’t imagine anything more important than what I’m doing right now because it’s about the country.”

His nomination to be the top science adviser in the USDA has sparked controversy, as Clovis has said he’s skeptical of climate science.

“I have looked at the science and I have enough of a science background to know when I’m being boofed and I think a lot of what we see is ‘junk science’, so I’m a skeptic,” Clovis said during a 2014 interview on Iowa Public Radio.

Another quote:

“What we see about a lot of this…is really about income redistribution from rich nations that are industrialized to nations that are not and it comes down to this false premise…that we ought to consume based on population rather than on the strength of our economy,” Clovis said. “If we have 20 percent of the world GDP, it wouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that we consume 20 percent of the energy of the world.”

He served in the Air Force and was an Economics Professor at an Iowa college so the guy is no slouch. Cue up the lamentations of the liberals....

Seen on Faceb**k

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Says it right there:


Not him personally but his appointees are doing the work he campaigned on - from CBS News:

Hundreds of VA officials fired since Trump's inauguration
The Department of Veterans Affairs announced today that more than 500 officials have been fired for misconduct since President Trump took office earlier this year, according to data posted online. (PDF file)

In an effort for more transparency and accountability within the VA, Secretary of Veterans Affairs David J. Shulkin announced that a public list of employee "accountability actions" will be posted online and updated weekly.

The list outlines a total of 747 disciplinary actions including 526 employees who were fired since January 20. The actions affected a myriad of positons ranging from a tractor operator to VA attorneys.The list does not include employee names due to privacy reasons but does note the employee's position and VA region.

"Veterans and taxpayers have a right to know what we're doing to hold our employees accountable and make our personnel actions transparent," Secretary Shulkin said in a statement.

Great news - until now, there was zero accountability. If someone royally screwed up at the VA, they would be put on administrative leave and they would then quietly show up at a different office in a different city and get back to "work" often with a pay raise for their troubles. This is the direct outcome of the law that Presidident Trump signed in June

This would have been fun to watch

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Two very alpha males meeting for the first time - from the London Daily Mail:

'No, I didn't hack your election': Trump challenges Putin over meddling in first face-to-face meeting at G20 summit that went on for TWO HOURS and resulted in Syrian ceasefire deal
President Donald Trump raised the simmering issue of Russian election interference in a face-to-face meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin – and Putin denied it, according to secretary of state Rex Tillerson.
- - -
Tillerson, who was in the meeting, said the Russians pushed Trump for proof and evidence of a claim the president himself doubted as recently as Thursday.

'The president at this point pressed him and felt like at this point, let’s talk about how do we go forward,' Tillerson said. He said the issue may simply be an 'intractable disagreement.'

A bit more - the deep state in the US:

U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded that Putin was behind a Moscow-backed effort to interfere in the presidential elections. 

Zero evidence for this - Fake News all over the place. The Dems could not accept the fact that they lost so badly so they went looking for an outside agent to blame.

The face-to-face meeting with Putin stretched on for more than two hours – and was quickly followed by news the U.S. and Russia had reached an agreement on a cease fire in Syria.

It was slated to last a half-hour.

After the first hour had gone by, a polite but insistent Melania Trump was sent in to try and break it up, a senior administration official told

But it was to no avail. The two leaders and their foreign ministers stayed in the room for two hours and 16 minutes.

Great - this is fantastic - they had a real meeting of the minds. Putin is not our friend - he only has Russia's interests at heart but he understands leadership and recognises that President Trump is as much a leader as he is and is giving him ever measure of respect.

Good times ahead for everyone.

More CNN memes

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These are fun - perfect way to mock the purveyors of Fake News:

A nice distinction by Niall Ferguson at Hot Air:

“Your Worst Nightmare: A Successful Donald Trump Presidency”
But politics, after all, is often a battle of perceptions. Niall Ferguson, a British historian and senior fellow at the Hoover Institution in Stanford, California, said in May: “I think one of the things Guardian readers, and their counterparts on the American coasts, don’t want to think about is the possibility that despite his obvious ineptitude, Trump might actually be successful.

“I said last summer to a bunch of liberal friends, ‘Your worst nightmare is not a Trump presidency; it’s a successful Trump presidency.’ The successful Trump presidency scenario is one in which, despite it all, the economy does better thanks to deregulation and tax cuts, foreign policy delivers some big wins on North Korea, the Middle East.

“It doesn’t take an awful lot for a president to start looking good. If the expectations start really low, which they have done, it may be one win, and I definitely don’t rule out a kind of ‘success in spite of himself’ scenario. And then you begin to wonder if a left-of-Clinton Democrat in 2020 would be blown away. We’ll see. The fun thing about doing history is you really can’t tell at this point which way it will go. It could quite easily go Jimmy Carter and he could be a lame duck.”


Saving our money

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President Trump shows that he knows how to run an organization - from The Daily Caller:

Trumps Spend $5 Million Less Than Obamas On White House Salaries
An analysis of White House salary data reveals that President Donald Trump’s administration is spending $5 million less of taxpayer money on his staff than his predecessor.

Trump employs 377 people at the White House, with a total of $35.8 million, while former President Barack Obama paid $40.9 million for 476 employees in 2015, according to data analyzed by Open The Books.

Another key difference between the Obama and Trump White House is the first lady’s staff. Michelle Obama retained 24 staffers in the first year of the Obama White House. Melania Trump currently employs four — a chief of staff who is also listed as adviser to the president, a deputy chief of staff, a communications director, and a scheduler.

“Projected four-year savings on the White House payroll could top $22 million,”  Adam Andrzejewski, CEO of Open The Books, writes for Forbes. Those projected savings include Trump’s promise to accept one dollar in salary and give the remainder back to the U.S. Treasury.

He is doing what he said he would. Nice to have that happen for a change.

January 2018

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