Recently in Politics Category

President Trump tweets - Germany

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Trump is owning the twittersphere - from England's The Sun:

DEBT COLLECTOR Donald Trump claims Germany owes the US and Nato ‘vast sums of money’ for defence of Europe against Russia
Tweeting a day after an awkward meeting with German leader Angela Merkel, Trump demanded Berlin should cough up billions of Euros more on defence.

Only the US and four other Nato members – including the UK – currently reach the alliance’s benchmark of spending on defence which is 2% of GDP.

But Germany spends a miserly 1.23% of its national income despite running a whopping £234 billion budget surplus.

The two leaders showed little common ground yesterday over a host of thorny issues, including Nato and defence spending.

And today Trump tweeted: “Germany owes vast sums of money to NATO & the United States must be paid more for the powerful, and very expensive, defence it provides to Germany!”

Germany is in arrears and needs to pony up the extra cash. They signed the treaty, they need to follow its rules instead of pissing away all of its money on feeding and housing the millions of young islamic males refugees.

President Trump's weekly address

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Just stumbled over this - he does a short heads-up about once/week - here is last weeks:

Here are the others - good stuff. Sort of like the Fireside Chats that President Franklin D. Roosevelt gave during his term in office.

February 25, 2017February 17, 2017February 10, 2017February 3, 2017January 28, 2017 - this is a lot more transparency than the last administration. The whole collection of White House videos can be found here: Featured Videos

Heh - President Trump

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From Facebook:

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And not a moment too soon

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From Townhall:

Sessions Has Asked Remaining Obama-Appointed U.S. Attorneys to Resign
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has asked the remaining Obama-appointed U.S. attorneys - 46 in all - to hand in their resignation. As he notes in his request, this is standard procedure when a new administration takes office.

Good - time to clean out the partisan deadwood. The New York Times is acting like this is unprecedented but it is not. Fake News again. Bill Clinton fired ALL of the U.S. Attorneys. As in all of them. All  93 of them. There was no scandal.

Nigel Farage at CPAC

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A wonderful 13 minute stemwinder:

Nigel was leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party and is one of the driving forces behind England's very successful BREXIT

A look at President Trump

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Dilbert creator Scott Adams has a good insight on President Trump and why some people are not able to "get" him:

How to Evaluate a President
Steve Jobs. Bill Gates. Mark Zuckerberg. Richard Branson. What do they all have in common, aside from wealth?

They all succeeded without the right kind of prior experience. Apparently they knew how to figure out what they needed once they started. I’ll bet they are all systems-thinkers, not goal-thinkers.

If you see the world in terms of goals, you might think President Trump has failed at every important goal so far. He didn’t get what he wanted on immigration. He hasn’t gotten his Supreme Court nomination confirmed. He hasn’t replaced Obamacare. He hasn’t defeated ISIS. He hasn’t done a lot of things he said he would do. He even had to fire General Flynn. President Trump is a big ol’ failure when it comes to goals.

Maybe that’s because Trump just started on the job. Success generally comes after you start. If you think success comes before you start, the world probably looks confusing to you.

A bit more:

Trump seems to be a systems thinker. I doubt he knew he would jump from real estate developer, to author, to reality TV star, to president. At least not in that order. Instead, he systematically accumulated money, persuasion skills, and personal connections until he had lots of options. Being president was one of them.

Now the world watches as an entrepreneurial systems-thinker with no government experience takes over the White House and tries to learn on the job. How did you expect that to go?

I expected some broken dishes, some firings, some chaos, and some rookie mistakes. We got all of that. But I also expect a systems-thinker to tame the chaos over time as he learns on the job. For example, the leaks will stop as soon as Trump fires the right people. He’ll figure out which meetings he can skip. He’ll know who to trust. He’ll learn where all the buttons and levers are. It’s a process.

Great analogy. Everyone is expecting another politician, not a sucessful businessman.

Now this would be wonderful - H.R.861

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I do not know if this will ever land on President Trump's desk but it sure would be nice - from congress.gov:

H.R.861 - To terminate the Environmental Protection Agency

Return environmental controls to the various states. For items like pollution crossing state borders, let Interior or some other agency handle this. The EPA bureaucracy is too entrenched and bloated to reform it - get rid of it entirely and build something different.

I am totally in favor of what the labor unions did in the 1900's but they have failed to adapt to changing times and they have become a political power more than a force of good for the average worker. The Boeing employees in South Carolina agree - from The Seattle Times:

Boeing’s South Carolina workers resoundingly defeat union
Nearly eight years after production workers at Boeing’s 787 manufacturing plant in South Carolina ousted the Machinists union, a much enlarged workforce voted decisively Wednesday to keep the union out.

The result was a blowout.

Out of the approximately 3,000 workers eligible to vote in North Charleston, 2,828 cast ballots, with 74 percent voting against the International Association of Machinists (IAM).

The labor climate in South Carolina:

The odds were always stacked against the IAM in South Carolina, a state that is politically and legally hostile to unions. It has the lowest percentage of union members of any state in the United States, 2.6 percent of employed workers.

And with membership not mandatory in a unionized workplace in a “right-to-work” state, the rate of union membership is even lower, just 1.6 percent.

National average is about 5%. I can see a place for unionization in some places - fire, police, hospitals, etc... but not schools, not government and definitely not industry.

Joy Villa sells records

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I posted yesterday about Joy Villa and the wonderful gown she wore to last night's Grammy Awards. It seems a lot of other people were curious enough to check out her music. Here is a screen-cap of the Amazon.com Best Sellers list:

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Not too shabby - number one spot for downloaded Album and number three spot for downloaded Song.  I wonder how the media will report this? They will not, that is their problem and why people are tuning them out.

From the Walnut Creek, CA East Bay Times:

Gov. Jerry Brown asks potential nemesis — President Trump — for aid
In December, Gov. Jerry Brown asserted California’s independence and blasted President Donald Trump for dismissing climate change.

On Friday, the governor turned to his potential nemesis for help — specifically, asking the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to declare a major disaster after the state was hammered by storms, floods and mudslides.

The request could be an early test of relations between the Democrats who run the nation’s largest state and the new Republican administration.
If California’s request is rejected, however, it might be difficult to pin it on a frosty relationship between the governor and the president, said Larry Gerston, professor emeritus of political science at San Jose State. “It’s an easy claim to make, but a hard one to prove,” he said.

FEMA considers many factors for disaster relief, including the severity of damage and cost, Gerston said. “It’s a very discretionary call by the president,” he said.

Naaaa - being that petty is a liberal move. Trump would never fall into that trap. There would be strings attached though - especially when CA has someone like Xavier Becerra as Attorney General. From Breitbart:

California AG Vows to Fight Trump over Federal Funds
California’s highest law enforcement official, Attorney General Xavier Becerra, echoed Golden State Democrats in their promise to wage battle against President Donald Trump to retain sanctuary policies that harbor illegal aliens in the state.

These poor saps are still operating as though President Trump were a Politician. He is not. He is a Businessman. Big Difference. Governor Brown needs something from the Federal Government. He will get it but there will be a good measure of Quid pro quo happening here. If anyone can help alleviate conditions in Oroville and the rest of the state it is FEMA - they have grown into an amazing organization. An example of what can happen when a branch of government is managed well.

Our school system - Jerry Pournelle

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Writer Jerry Pournelle has a few things to say about the state of the American Public School System and why Mrs. DeVos if the perfect person for the job:

Everyone needs competition, but no one wants any for himself; one reason our schools for two generations or more have been easily mistaken for an act of oppression settled on us by a foreign conqueror. There used to be built in competition: schools were mostly paid for by the people who used them, in small enough school districts that it was actually realistic for competent people – like retired military, or police, or business people or even teachers – to run for them. They were usually depicted in intellectual circles as bombastic idiots whose main objective was to keep costs down – Miss Brooks was always in the right and the Board in the wrong – but even in fiction it generally worked out to the benefit of the students. Not any more. The problems and dissents in today's world ignore the students, and work out to the benefit of the politicians, educrat unions, and teachers with tenure regardless of competence, and everyone knows this. Few politicians send their own children to public schools, especially not to any they actually manage. They know better. Jimmy Carter sent his kids to public schools, as I recall. Never heard of them since, but perhaps I do not pay close attention to such news.

Recently there was drama in the Senate, with the Vice President called to preside over, and cast the deciding vote in, the confirmation of Mrs. DeVos as Secretary of Education. Not a single Democrat voted for her, including New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, when not all that long ago served on the Board of the school choice organization Mrs. DeVos chairs. According to the Wall Street Journal ( The Real Democratic Party) Mr. Cory Booker hopes to run for President, and since it is impossible to raise the money of superdelegate votes for the Democratic Nomination without the support of the Educrat Unions, he went along with the party Line and voted against his one time friend.

The official reason for the extraordinary opposition to Mr. Trump’s non-political nominee is her lack of educational experience. Of course to gain acceptable professional experience you would have to come up through the ranks of the educrats and become one of them – or break your heart in a classroom in a system of education indistinguishable from and act of war against the American people since 1983. I would have thought it obvious that whomever Mr. Trump appointed to Education Secretary it would not be an “experienced professional.” Instead he chose a very wealthy school choice activist; sort of like choosing a community organizer to be President? But perhaps that it too snarky.

Much more at the site - Jerry covers a couple of subjects with each post - well worth checking out every couple of days.

Heh - a successful person always has an ace or two up their sleeve. From The Washington Post:

Trump considers writing ‘brand new’ immigration order
President Trump said Friday that he is considering rewriting his executive order temporarily barring refugees and citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the country, indicating that the administration may try to quickly restore some aspects of the now-frozen travel ban or replace it with other face-saving measures.

Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One that he would probably wait until Monday or Tuesday to take any action, and White House chief of staff Reince Priebus said several options — including taking the case to the Supreme Court — were still on the table.

Trump hinted that the ongoing legal wrangling might move too slowly for his taste, though he thought he would ultimately prevail in court.

This will be fun to watch - the 9th Circuit rejected the law that Obama signed into being in 2015 which Trump was just enforcing. Now the fur flies...

Great news - Senator Jeff Sessions

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From the Associated Press:

Senate confirms Sessions for attorney general
The Senate on Wednesday confirmed Sen. Jeff Sessions to be attorney general in the Trump administration despite fierce Democratic opposition to the Alabama Republican over his record on civil rights and immigration.

The 52-47 nearly party-line vote capped weeks of divisive battles over Sessions, an early supporter of President Donald Trump and one of the Senate's most conservative lawmakers. After the vote was announced, Sessions' Republican colleagues applauded the outcome while barely a handful of Democrats did the same.

In a post-vote valedictory speech, Sessions alluded to the bitter partisanship and wished for more collegiality.

"Denigrating people who disagree with us, I think, is not a healthy trend for our body," he said.

Sessions is classy and brilliant - he will be perfect for the position. A lot better than that idiot Eric Holder. Time to clean out the Department of Justice.

She is talking to opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn during PMQ -- a weekly event in which the prime minister stands in Parliament and answers questions.

He looks like a great choice. Young but has a bucket-load of experience and currently sits on the 10th Circuit.  Tyler O'Neil has a nice writeup at PJ Media:

5 Things You Should Know About Supreme Court Nominee Neil Gorsuch
On Tuesday, President Donald Trump nominated appellate judge Neil Gorsuch to serve on the Supreme Court. Trump fulfilled his pledge to select a nominee "in the mold of Antonin Scalia," for Gorsuch seems cut from exactly the same cloth.

Like Scalia, Gorsuch is both a textualist and an originalist — he interprets legal provisions as their words were originally understood, and not according to doctrines like the "Living Constitution." This is important, and points to how he will rule on pivotal cases if confirmed by the Senate.

1. Young but well qualified
Gorsuch, at the age of 49, would be the youngest Supreme Court Justice in 30 years (since Clarence Thomas was confirmed at age 43). But this relative youth does not translate to inexperience.

Gorsuch attended Columbia University and Harvard Law School, and then he clerked for Washington, D.C. Circuit Court judge David Sentelle. He also clerked for Supreme Court Justices Byron White and Anthony Kennedy in the years 1993 and 1994. Following these clerkships, he studied for a doctorate of philosophy at Oxford University under the legal philosopher John Finnis.

Next, he spent ten years at a law firm in Washington, D.C. and then worked for the Justice Department under President George W. Bush. Bush nominated him to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, where he has served ever since. This court covers Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Utah, Wyoming, and New Mexico. Gorsuch was confirmed quickly and without controversy.

Seems like a great choice - the other four items at the site are worth reading as well. The Democrats are going to try to Bork him but he should get in - they just do not have enough people to block his appointment.

Michael Ramirez

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Gets it:

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One week in office

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President Trump on his first week in office:

Oh how I wish - Trump Executive Order

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From Peter at Bayou Renaissance Man:

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The USA and England

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Rapport seems to be better than ever - from the London Daily Mail:

What a special relationship! Trump gets touchy-feely with Theresa as he declares 'great days lie ahead' and reveals he's meeting the Queen (let's just hope he keeps his hands to himself that day)

Italics mine - come on now. Bias this blatent? Trump may have talked about it, Bill Clinton did it multiple times and Hillary covered for him.

President Donald Trump welcomed his first foreign leader to the White House on Friday, Britain's Theresa May.

The pair bonded over a bust of Winston Churchill in the American president's office and were later seen walking hand-in-hand from down the West Wing Colonnade on their way to a joint press conference.

Trump grabbed May's hand as they approached the cameras, patting it twice, and then letting it go.

May announced at a news conference that the Queen has invited Trump for a state visit to the UK and revealed that the president and first lady had accepted.

Trump and May opened a new chapter in the 'special relationship' between the allied nations as they met today for talks on trade, NATO and the fight against ISIS.

Emphasis mine again - this is amazing news. We have not had a State Visit with the Queen in years. The last Official State Visits were George W. in 2001, Bill Clinton informal in 2000, George H.W. in 1989 and Ronald Reagan 1988. Nixon did an informal meeting in 1970, J.F. Kennedy informal in 1961, Eisenhower an informal visit in 1959. Like I said, a State Visit is a very rare event and heralds a major diplomatic closeness with our best friend.

The first major winter storm hit the Pacific Northwest December 14th through the 17th. It was bad here - my pipes froze for ten days and these storms laid down the first of the ice that is still in my driveway today. The skiing was great at Mt. Baker but the rest of Whatcom County was greatly encumbered.

For all that we had here, Oregon was much harder hit with flooding and severe storm damage.

From today's FEMA Website:

President Trump Declares Major Disaster for Oregon
Release date: January 25, 2017
Release Number: HQ-17-004
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that federal disaster assistance has been made available to the state of Oregon to supplement state, tribal, and local recovery efforts in the area affected by a severe storm and flooding during the period of December 14-17, 2016.

Federal funding is available to state, tribal, and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by a severe storm and flooding in Josephine and Lane counties.

Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures statewide.

This should have been declared within the first week after the storm abated, not over one month later. The last line about "available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures" is very good as this allows for immediate funding for infrastructure repair and they will figure out how to pay for it later. Stabilizing highways against earth movement, checking bridges, power lines, etc... This way, things are beefed up in the event another storm comes along.

President Trump's first Monday in office

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Winnie's back home

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From The Washington Times:

President Trump returns bust of Churchill to Oval Office
Winston Churchill is back in the Oval Office.

On his first day in office, President Trump brought back a bust of the legendary British prime minister to the West Wing, after President Obama had removed it. Mr. Obama replaced it with a bust of Martin Luther King Jr.

Reporters who were summoned to the Oval Office Friday night to witness Mr. Trump signing an executive order noticed the Churchill bust had been returned to the Oval Office.

British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson had speculated that Mr. Obama removed Churchill’s bust in part because he is “part-Kenyan,” and was motivated by anti-colonial feelings. Mr. Obama refuted that, saying he had moved the bust to a place of prominence in his private office in the White House residence.

Not to demean Dr. King's legacy at all but I believe that Winston Churchill had the greater effect on world good than Dr. King. Churchill was one of the dozen people who turned World War Two around and won it for the allies. His memory deserves to be cherished. Besides, Dr. King has a very large (and Chinese made) monument on the Mall.

It is now official

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Donald Trump was sworn in a America's 45th president.

Should be an interesting eight years.

I really like that in his speech, Trump referred to himself three times while he referred to We The People 45 times. In Obama's farewell speech, he referred to himself 90 times. Big difference.

A great campaign slogan

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Shamelessly stolen from Mostly Cajun.

Trump meeting with M.L. King III

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From the London Daily Mail:

Donald Trump PRAYS with Martin Luther King's son to 'heal the nation': President-elect makes peace move after spat with civil rights icon John Lewis
President-elect Donald Trump prayed with the son of Martin Luther King Jr. at Trump Tower Monday, just days after the president-elect went after civil rights icon John Lewis on Twitter as someone who was 'all talk.'

Trump 'prayed with Martin Luther King III & discussed the legacy & work of his father #martinlutherkingday #MLKDAY' tweeted incoming White House press secretary Sean Spicier Monday afternoon.

Spicer included a photograph of Trump flashing a 'thumbs up' and posing next to King in front of a wall of grip-and-grin photos inside Trump's Trump Tower office. Included on Trump's 'me wall' are photos of him with John F. Kennedy Jr. and Ronald Reagan, and a 1990 copy of Playboy Magazine with Trump on the cover.

A source who was at the meeting said it had opened with a prayer about 'healing the nation', the Washington Post reported.

The prayer and reflection came on a day when Trump hailed the 'wonderful things' that King stood for – following a nasty online spat with civil Lewis, who is skipping Trump's inauguration after saying his election was 'not legitimate'.

Oh - and Representative Lewis? You also boycotted the George W. Bush inauguration - from this January 21st, 2001 article at the Washington Post:

"It's kind of gloomy," says Rep. John Conyers, the Michigan Democrat who is dean of the Congressional Black Caucus. He boards the Capitol's underground subway en route to the swearing-in, then pulls a black ribbon from his suit pocket. "I've got a little pin to put on." It's a CBC protest pin. There's a small piece of paper attached: This ribbon represents the fact that the will of the people was not honored in the 2000 presidential election. That's how John Conyers feels about George W. Bush's big moment. "But we've got to keep on fighting," he adds.

Some members of the Black Caucus decided to boycott Inauguration Day; John Lewis, for instance, spent the day in his Atlanta district. He thought it would be hypocritical to attend Bush's swearing-in because he doesn't believe Bush is the true elected president.

Emphasis mine - a bit of a one-trick pony aren't you Mr. Lewis.

While John Lewis is sputtering about Trump not being his President, Dr. Martin Luther King's son is meeting with Trump. From ABC:

Trump to Meet With Martin Luther King Jr.'s Son Today
President-elect Donald Trump is expected to meet with Martin Luther King Jr.'s son to discuss the civil rights leader's legacy.

Trump's incoming press secretary, Sean Spicer, announced on Twitter that the president-elect is meeting with Martin Luther King III today, the federal holiday honoring Martin Luther King Jr.

Lewis is demonstrating grandstanding. Trump is demonstrating leadership.

Now this could be interesting

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From Politico:

Peter Thiel considering bid for California governor
Peter Thiel, the Silicon Valley billionaire and outspoken Donald Trump supporter, is considering a 2018 bid for California governor, according to three Republicans familiar with his thinking.

Thiel, who co-founded PayPal and was an early investor in Facebook, has been discussing a prospective bid with a small circle of advisers, including Rob Morrow, who has emerged as his political consigliere.

Morrow has worked at Clarium Capital, the San Francisco-based investment management firm and hedge fund that Thiel started.

Those who have been in touch with the 49-year-old entrepreneur are skeptical that he’ll enter the race. He is a deeply private figure, and California is unfriendly territory for a Republican – particularly a pro-Trump one. The president-elect won just over 30 percent of the vote there.

But they add that Thiel has conspicuously yet to rule out a bid and that those around him continue to discuss it.

It would be worth his tossing his hat into the ring just to see the hippies heads exploding in righteous indignation. Same thing as I would love to see Trump's son Don Jr. run for NYC mayor if Hillary tries to run for that position. Punch back twice as hard!

Hope in Venezuela

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From Russia Today:

Venezuelan parliament votes to remove Maduro as president, claims he ‘abandoned’ office
Venezuela’s opposition-controlled parliament has passed a resolution saying President Nicolas Maduro has “abandoned” his post. The vote came despite a warning by the Supreme Court that it violates the Venezuelan Constitution.

A majority of the 106 deputies of the opposition-led National Assembly on Monday voted to adopt a resolution aimed at effectively ousting the Venezuelan president, declaring that he had “abandoned his post” due to his stewardship of the country’s stagnating economy – and calling for snap presidential elections. Prior to the vote conducted at the request of the opposition deputy Juan Pablo Garcia, MPs from Maduro’s own United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) left the room, El Nacional reports.

No word on this from DrudgeReport or Breitbart but Russia Today is usually pretty reliable. I hope that it is not too late to turn the Bolivarian Revolution around. Another socialist fever-dream consigned to the trashbin of history.

Good news - the Churchill statue

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From the UK Telegraph:

Winston Churchill bust set for Oval Office return by Donald Trump
Donald Trump has made no secret of the fact that he intends to rip up Barack Obama's legacy when he takes office - ending the Trans-Pacific Partnership, redrawing Obamacare and loading up Guantanamo with "some bad dudes".

However, one expected action is likely to be less controversial, certainly in Britain: that of restoring the bust of Winston Churchill to the Oval Office.

Mr Trump, who has frequently professed his admiration for Britain's wartime leader, was asked earlier this week whether he was considering returning the bust, sculpted by Jacob Epstein, to the White House.

“I am, indeed, I am,” he said, during an interview at the New York Times, at which he was sitting in front of a picture of Churchill.

Mr Obama replaced the Churchill bust with one of Martin Luther King in the Oval Office in 2009, soon after he took over the presidency, causing outrage on both sides of the Atlantic.

I get it - MLK was a great leader too. But... to send the President's bust of Churchill back to the British Embassy is just a slap in the face to our long and wonderful alliance. There are some things you just do not do.

It's those Russian hackers again

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From New York's Staten Island Live:

Staten Islanders to Sanitation: 'Where are the plows?'
If you drove on Staten Island roadways at any point on Saturday, you may have asked: "Where are the plows?'

During what seemed to be an unexpected snowstorm, Staten Island roads remained covered in slush and snow that was quickly turning to ice as Saturday night approached.

On a drive from Grasmere to Silver Lake at 6:30 p.m. not one plow was spotted, and main thoroughfares, like Clove Road, Victory Boulevard and Forest Avenue were slippery and snow covered.

However, the city Sanitation Department said they have full plowing and spreader operations in progress, with 89 salt spreaders and 122 plows out on Staten Island.

Salt spreaders started at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday morning and plows started around 1 to 1:30 p.m., according to Dennis Diggins, First Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Sanitation.

De Blasio making sure that Hillary is able to win his job away from him. After all, it is her turn.

Now this would be a lot of fun

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Ths came in over the transom - we know that Hillary is talking about running for mayor of New York City

Someone made the comment that Trump should float it out that his 39 year old son Don Trump Jr. was also considering running for the same office.

That would get a few panties in a bunch...

Trump wields power with a simple tweet

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I love this guy - from The Washington Post:

Trump takes aim at House Republicans, and they run for cover
The Trump effect has landed forcefully on Capitol Hill.

Less than two hours after President-elect Donald Trump criticized House Republicans — in a tweet, of course — for trying to gut an ethics investigative unit on the first day of business in the new Congress, those plans lay in shambles in the Republican conference’s meeting room.

The immediate outcome was to keep intact the independent Office of Congressional Ethics — exactly the status quo that House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) and his leadership team had hoped to protect. That result, however, appeared largely to be the result of Trump’s intervention rather than Ryan’s maneuvering.

There was a broader outcome, too: The unruly Republican caucus that has wreaked havoc in the House for the entirety of Ryan’s tenure fell in line. And there were signs, judging from Tuesday’s drama, that they might continue doing so this year.

The Trump Presidency will be studied in history books for many many years. I think that he is just what we needed at this point in time. Hillary would have been an abject disaster.

Heh - I am really liking this guy

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From the London Daily Mail:

Trump blasts Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel for record-setting 762 homicides and 4,331 shooting victims in 2016 and says he 'must ask for Federal help' if he can't fix Windy City
Donald Trump used his Twitter bully pulpit on Monday to blast Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel for allowing his city's murder and firearms shooting rates to spiral out of control.

'Chicago murder rate is record setting – 4,331 shooting victims with 762 murders in 2016,' Trump tweeted.

'If Mayor can't do it he must ask for Federal help!'

2016 was one of the most violent years in Chicago history with the most homicides in two decades – more than New York and Los Angeles combined.

Not afraid to call attention when things are not running well. This is 100% required for a business and is swept under the rug when it is a political problem. The next eight years are going to be really interesting.

Veterans healthcare being restructured

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President Trump looks to be doing good work turning the Veterans Administration around. From Breitbart:

Trump Team Floats ‘Public-Private’ Veterans Health Care
President-elect Donald Trump met with health care executives on Wednesday to begin a serious reform of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

“I’ve been saying we have to take care of our vets,” Trump told reporters at Mar-a-Lago after the meetings. “We are working on something to make it great for our veterans, because they are treated very, very unfairly.”

Wonderful news - this is so easy to do but it goes against the grain of the unelected entrenched federal bureaucrats who would lose their power if their jobs were privatized. Hold them accountable for their errors. Faster please.

More on the United Nations vote

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Pieces are starting to fall into place - from FOX News:

Israel accuses Obama administration of helping craft, push UN censure
Israel’s government publicly accused the Obama administration Sunday of helping create and push the recently passed United Nations resolution condemning settlement activity, with a top official telling Fox News they have “ironclad information” on the U.S. government’s involvement.

“We have rather ironclad information from sources in both the Arab world and internationally that this was a deliberate push by the United States and in fact they helped create the resolution in the first place,” David Keyes, spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said on Fox News’ “America’s News HQ.”

The accusation marks a new escalation in the Netanyahu government’s response to the U.N. Security Council vote on Friday. The resolution passed thanks to a U.S. abstention, a decision Netanyahu has described as a “shameful ambush.”

The White House already has acknowledged President Obama made the decision for U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power to abstain. Unclear was how involved the Obama administration was in crafting and pushing the resolution itself – which initially was put forward by Egypt, and then pursued by New Zealand, Malaysia, Senegal and Venezuela.

And of course, President Trump is acting very presidential - two tweets from this morning:

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It will be so nice to have an adult in the room.

John Kerry and Israel

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A parting shot - from CNN:

Secretary of State John Kerry to outline Middle East peace plan
Secretary of State John Kerry will deliver a speech Wednesday on the Obama administration's vision for Middle East peace, State Department spokesman Mark Toner said.

The speech at the State Department comes as the relationship between the US and Israel frays following the Obama administration's controversial decision to abstain on Friday from a UN resolution condemning Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Kerry said at the time that, "In the coming days, I will speak further to the vote in the Security Council today and share more detailed thoughts, drawn from the experience of the last several years, on the way ahead."

What an inflated sense of self-importance. The guy is clueless and impotent. He thinks he is framing a majestic legacy and in less than 25 days, he will be out of a job. In four years, he will be a punchline. In 10 years he will be forgotten.

Will be completely dissolved for the duration of his Presidency. From FOX News:

Trump to dissolve philanthropic foundation to avoid conflict of interest
President-elect Donald Trump said Saturday that he will dissolve his philanthropic foundation to avoid “even the appearance” of a conflict of interest, as he prepares to take over the White House next month.

The plan to shutter the Donald J. Trump Foundation was not unexpected, amid continuing criticism that Trump’s international real estate holdings and other business ventures will present for him as president potential conflicts of interest.

“The foundation has done enormous good works over the years in contributing millions of dollars to countless worthy groups, including supporting veterans, law enforcement officers and children,” Trump said in a statement released by his presidential transition office. “However, to avoid even the appearance of any conflict with my role as president, I have decided to continue to pursue my strong interest in philanthropy in other ways.”

Paging Hillary Clinton - Mrs. Clinton to the White Courtesy Phone please...

This will be a fun eight years - Trump is already rich; he does not need to prostitute his office to make money during his time in power. He is already in power. He is successfully trolling Hillary and living inside her brain (and any other observant Democrat brains too) rent free.

From The Jerusalem Post:

Egypt pulls anti-settlement resolution at last minute
A day filled with diplomatic drama ended Thursday evening, when Egypt withdrew an anti-settlement resolution it intended to submit to the UN Security Council just over an hour after President-elect Donald Trump came out squarely against it.

“The resolution being considered at the United Nations Security Council regarding Israel should be vetoed,” Trump said in a statement.

“As the United States has long maintained, peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians will only come through direct negotiations between the parties, and not through the imposition of terms by the United Nations. This puts Israel in a very poor negotiating position, and is extremely unfair to all Israelis.”

Until Trump’s statement, there was a sense in Jerusalem that President Barack Obama – an ardent opponent of the settlements – might not use the US veto in the Security Council to shield Israel from the resolution.

Good.

Eating crow

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Five minutes of public figures and pundits saying that Donald Trump would never be elected.

Denial is not just a river in Egypt.

Barry acting all presidential-like

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From Mediaite:

Obama Heads to Golf Course After Receiving Reports on Berlin Attack and Russian Ambassador Death
Well, this is what one would call bad political optics.

With the dual breaking news events surrounding potential terrorism and a foreign diplomat being shot to death, White House pool reports showed that President Barack Obama headed to a country club in Hawaii near his rental house, where he is vacationing.

Trump on the other hand - from Breitbart:

Donald Trump Condemns ‘Radical Islamic Terrorist’ Attacks in Berlin, Turkey
President-elect Donald Trump reacted to the news that Andrei Karlov, a Russian ambassador to Turkey, was assassinated on Monday.

“Today we offer our condolences to the family and loved ones of Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov, who was assassinated by a radical Islamic terrorist,” Trump said in a statement. “The murder of an ambassador is a violation of all rules of civilized order and must be universally condemned.”

Trump also released a statement condemning an attack in Berlin, after a tractor trailer drove into a Christmas market killing nine and injuring at least 50.

“Innocent civilians were murdered in the streets as they prepared to celebrate the Christmas holiday,” he said. “ISIS and other Islamist terrorists continually slaughter Christians in their communities and places of worship as part of their global jihad.”

Quite the difference - one is a clueless narcissist and the other is a true leader.

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