Saturday, March 25, 2017

Trump's Troubling Week.

Obamacare , Trump-care and Ryan-care . And I don't care .
Trump had a bad week
between media and medical.
I was pretty much going to write about the TRUMP budget , rather than put any thing down about the defeat of the House Republican's trying to "Repeal and Replace" Obamacare . We'll it did not go as  they planned . (1.1)>>The Republican's have had 7 years to come up with something . That has been the argument about that party . That they needed a plan to replace . In the REALITY of sorts , the GOP never had a plan -- the plan it's self was a lie - what Paul Ryan , Trump just realized that the repeal would put so many American's at risk with out having any health insurance { estimation between 14 to 20 million} with no back up plan the repeal would be catastrophic .  There is another "twist" to this . The power of the healthcare industry , their lobby was against the repeal , because they are making money -- yes MONEY ! the Obamacare industry managed to { as in a market based $$$ system} expanded to high revenue earnings . As I wrote before , in order to have REAL HEALTHCARE REFORM we have to dump the market based system of healthcare , go boldly towards a Single -Payer system. Congress has to be in a position to negotiate with the HMO's,  the whole industry on making healthcare really affordable . Right now they can't . Even President Trump the great negotiator could not drag the entire industry to the table -- which he should have done if the whole GOP wanted to do anything . Seriously about healthcare reform.Seven years of Republican efforts to eradicate President Barack Obama's proudest domestic achievement ended Friday before a single vote was cast.House Speaker Paul Ryan sensationally pulled his Obamacare repeal bill from the floor Friday afternoon, a day after President Donald Trump had threatened to walk away from health care reform if he didn't get a vote."We were very close," Trump said in the Oval Office after the bill was pulled. "It was a very, very tight margin."Worse, it isn’t clear at all that Congress can pass a plan to replace health-care reform once it is repealed. Democrats will oppose efforts to roll back Medicaid, repeal progressive taxes and put people even more at risk. The entire Congress could face extortion from the House Freedom Caucus, the uber-right-wing caucus that wants to roll back not just Obamacare, but Medicare and Medicaid as well. Repeal and delay could easily turn into repeal and collapse. In an interview with The Washington Post, Trump deflected any responsibility for the setback and instead blamed Democrats. “We couldn’t get one Democratic vote,” he said.“I don’t blame Paul,” Trump added, referring to Ryan.Trump said he would not ask Republican leaders to reintroduce the legislation in the coming weeks, and congressional leaders made clear that the bill — known as the American Health Care Act — was dead.Trump thanked Paul Ryan for his hard work and noted that Democratic Leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer were the "losers" of the whole affair.  "I've been saying for a year and a half that the best thing we could do --politically speaking-- is to let Obamacare explode, it is exploding right now, many states have big problems. Almost all states have big problems," the president said. The failure to pass a healthcare bill has done damage to Trump’s agenda, which is hard to overstate. Much of Trump’s image is built around the idea that he’s a master negotiator, able to forge complex deals.

The not so great budget .
There are many points to this budget . This "budget" serves the wealthy by giving them tax breaks , while those less fortunate will have less services or none. Mostly I DON'T AGREE WITH building up the military budget !!!   Starting with as President Trump again called (1.2)>>to revitalize the United States military, most notably with a 10 percent increase in the defense budget. Such proposals make for a snappy sound bite and enable the president to bask in the reflected glow of the armed forces, which happen to be more popular than he is. Yet in the absence of a coherent national strategy, arbitrary increases in the defense budget will do little to make America safer, and could make the world more dangerous.The “skinny budget” that the Trump Administration will release this week isn’t expected to include any information about the tax and entitlement changes it will propose in its full budget later this spring, in sharp contrast to prior Presidents’ initial budgets.  The President’s emerging fiscal agenda, however, is increasingly clear.  It features large increases in defense funding that are offset by cuts in a range of critical domestic priorities, substantial tax reductions for the wealthy, losses in health care for low- and moderate-income Americans, and potentially deep cuts in entitlement programs outside of Medicare and Social Security.  President Trump's blueprint for the next fiscal year, released Thursday, was no different.The reaction illustrated why, despite the significant attention they are drawing, Trump's proposed dramatic cuts will likely be scaled back, changed or eliminated altogether. Trump has requested $3 billion in supplemental funds for his promised border wall with Mexico and other immigration actions. Democrats are refusing to fund the border wall. Even Republicans want Trump to keep his promise to have Mexico pay for it. And that could lead to a spring funding stalemate that risks a government shutdown. 
It's about Cuts and more cuts ..........
As Congress weighs Mr. Trump’s requests, industry leaders who are facing a loss of federal funding are starting to sound (2)>>the alarm bout the dire situations they could be facing.The reductions include $5.8 billion, or 18 percent, from the National Institutes of Health, which fund thousands of researchers working on cancer and other diseases. They also include $900 million, or about 15 percent, from the Department of Energy’s Office of Science, which funds the national laboratories, considered among the crown jewels of basic research in the world.Thousands of jobs could be lost at the State Department because of the 31 percent funding cut that the White House has requested.Many educational and cultural exchange programs designed to improve the image of the United States would be abolished or pared back to pay for an increase in military spending. The Global Climate Change Initiative and a number of envoys and offices created during the Obama administration are slated for elimination.Advocates for the poor say the budget plan the Trump administration rolled out on Thursday would be a kick in the shins for low-income Americans.Mr. Trump promised to put an end to urban blight. But now that he is in office, he does not appear interested in putting federal government resources behind that goal.Mr. Trump would cut the budget of the Department of Housing and Urban Development by 13 percent. He would also eliminate programs like the Community Development Block Grant, which cities have used to fund programs such as Meals on Wheels as well as homeless shelters and neighborhood revitalization initiatives.The President supports the House Republican legislation to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which would cause 24 million people to lose coverage by 2026 by effectively ending the ACA’s Medicaid expansion over time, capping per-beneficiary federal funding for Medicaid, and making private health insurance coverage less affordable for moderate-income and older people and would use much of the savings thereby extracted from low- and moderate-income people to pay for large tax cuts tilted heavily toward the wealthy. 
Paul Ryan's budget .

The Republican focus on poverty issues comes at a time when the party’s image is in desperate need of a makeover, but also at a moment when that makeover really just isn’t possible. The Republicans would like to shed their “party of the rich” image without actually going to the trouble of changing their policies, and the anti-poverty push is part of that – they’re going to gut social programs that are working as they should be, all the while claiming that they’re “fixing” a problem that doesn’t really exist. It’s more about reducing government spending than it is about helping the less fortunate.Some of President (3)>>Donald Trump's planned budget cuts appear to be targeted more at undercutting Democratic priorities than at shrinking the national debt. A host of planned funding cuts to federal agencies, reported last week by The Hill, are part of the Trump administration's desire to eliminate roughly $10.5 trillion in spending over the next 10 years -- nearly all of the federal government's discretionary spendingIndeed, just four years ago Speaker Paul Ryan, then chairman of the House Budget Committee, proposed almost exactly what Trump wants now: big increases for the military combined with tens of billions in cuts to non defense programs. The House went along, and within months the whole appropriations process collapsed, setting the stage for a costly government shutdown in the fall of 2013.Now Trump wants the GOP to try again — only this time he openly substitutes his own ideology for deficit reduction.As proposed, the Trump budget almost certainly will not pass Congress. Too many lawmakers, including many Republicans, have declared it dead on arrival. But the document nonetheless represents a crucial road map for a president who is new to government, and who has at least a full term to pursue his goals. It is the clearest practical expression yet of what Trump’s chief strategist Steve Bannon described as the “deconstruction of the administrative state” last month and his agenda of “economic nationalism.”
The wiretap myth.
(4)>>The bizarre saga of President Donald Trump's claims that he was wiretapped by President Barack Obama last year reaches a dramatic climax Monday with FBI Director James Comey's testimony to the House Intelligence Committee.The high-stakes testimony in the House Intelligence Committee - the first public hearing into both controversies - came as Trump sought to steer the news focus by calling the Russia issue, which has been a cloud over his victory, "fake news".Trump created controversy in early March when he tweeted without giving evidence that Obama's administration had wiretapped Trump Tower in New York City. Top US intelligence officials, including the director of the FBI, say they have no information supporting President Donald Trump's claim that his predecessor Barack Obama ordered a wiretap of him during the 2016 election campaign. FBI Director James Comey appeared on Monday before a panel of Congress members looking into possible intelligence breaches, allegations of Russian hacking, and links between Moscow and Trump's campaign."With respect to the president's tweets about alleged wiretapping directed at him by the prior administration, I have no information that supports those tweets," Comey told members of the House Intelligence Committee.
Spy vs Spy .
Enter Devin Nunes. the wiretap lie gets even more twisted . The Republican congressman from California is the chair of the House Intelligence Committee and earned his badge of infamy this week when he claimed that President Trump and his associates were “incidentally monitored.” On Friday, Nunes backed down from that claim. Very embarrassing.This week, The New York Times called Nunes “a lapdog in a watchdog role,” referring to Nunes’s authority in leading the Congressional investigation into Russia’s role in last year’s election. House minority leader Nancy Pelosi called Nunes, who served on Trump’s transition team, “a stooge of the president.” Senator John McCain called Nunes’s behavior “very disturbing.” Others argued that Nunes’s actions not only put into question his own credibility as well as the House Intelligence Committee’s capability to investigate Russia and Trump. Meanwhile, journalists and politicians quickly figured out that Nunes was not only misleading in his remarks about alleged monitoring of Trump aides, he also destroyed his credibility as the leader of the Russia investigation in the process. Thursday was when The New York Times called Nunes “a lapdog in a watchdog role.” It’s also when Nancy Pelosi called him a “stooge” for President Trump who “acted outside the circle of respect.” And remember that McCain, one of the most highly regarded Republicans on Capitol Hill, had already basically said that Nunes embarrassed Congress. A very bad day indeed.
But by every conceivable metric, Trump failed and failed miserably this week. The only possible exception was the Gorsuch hearing, the one thing beyond Trump’s control, but even there he ran into surprisingly determined Democratic resistance.Not only did Trump fail—most spectacularly with the failure of the American Health Care Act—but he also showed no capacity to lead.

(1.1)>>The Republican's have had 7 years to come up with something .Republicans have voted more than 60 times to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. “Repeal and replace” was a staple of Donald Trump’s stump speech. Give us control, Republicans promised, and what Mike Pence promises as the “first order of business” will be repeal and replace. It was the fault of Democrats! Why, of course it was. Let's not, even for a moment, even dare to imagine that Trump/Ryan-care would have been absolutely horrible. That no one in their right mind would want it if they were actually paying attention.Here's an idea! FIX Obamacare, which IS actually working, despite its flaws, and IS helping millions, and keeping so many people alive. Instead of forcing some garbage down everyone's throats that abandons people in need, screws over the elderly, and poor, and pulls the plug on a ton of people who would die without it.   (1)>>to revitalize the United States military. President Trump’s call for an increase in military spending doesn’t have even the veneer of this sort of guidance. Instead, the administration has delivered a bundle of simplistic national security slogans rife with contradictions and gaps. Most troubling is the fact that the Trump administration apparently intends to fund increases in the defense budget by slashing components of the federal budget that contribute significantly to national security, including the State Department. The armed forces are a vital component of the national security tool kit, but so are diplomacy, economic engagement and post-conflict reconstruction. The use of military force should always be a last resort, and the balanced application of other, less costly tools of national power helps prevent wars and crises from arising in the first place. (2)>>the alarm about the dire situations they could be facing. The potential impacts of President Donald Trump’s recently proposed federal budget cuts, which could cost California agencies millions in rent vouchers and other programs.  (3)>>Donald Trump's planned budget cuts appear to be targeted more at undercutting Democratic priorities. President Trump's Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney on Sunday defended the administration's budget blueprint for not reducing the federal deficit — despite his past reputation as a deficit hawk member of Congress."Keep in mind, the administration is different than members of the Hill, the members of the House and the Senate," Mulvaney told host Chuck Todd on "Meet The Press.""Every House member, which I used to be, has a constituency," said Mulvaney. "We have a group of people we represent. Senators represent the whole state. There's also a lot of special interests, a lot of lobbying involved. The president's not beholden to any of that. The president represents everybody."Mulvaney estimates that if the president's budget were to be approved by Congress, that the deficit would remain the same as it is now. On the campaign trail, then-candidate Trump repeatedly promised to balance the budget "quickly," and at one point, even made a pledge to get rid of the federal debt in eight years(4)>>The bizarre saga of President Donald Trump's claims . Trump: NY Times “Had A Front-Page Story” Showing “Wiretapping,” And The Times “Dropped The Headline” Because “They Probably Didn’t Like It.” In an interview with Time magazine, President Donald Trump defended his claim that former President Barack Obama ordered a wiretap of Trump Tower by saying, “The New York Times had a front-page story, which they actually reduced, they took it, they took it the word wiretapping out of the title, but its first story in the front page of the paper was wiretapping.” He suggested that “they then dropped that headline and they used another headline without the word wiretap” because “they probably didn’t like” the original headline. Even Fox News is sprinting away from Donald Trump’s bogus and paranoid claim that President Barack Obama ordered wiretaps of Trump Tower.According to a report from the Los Angeles Times, the right-wing “news” organization has fired senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano after perpetuating Trump’s false wiretapping claim during a series of segments last week.

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