Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The USA military and intelligence community might want to warm up to Trump by displaying their "humanitarian" soldier.

Let's just think about his a minute.

November 23, 2016
By Edward Rios
Donald Trump (click here) has offered retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson the role of secretary of housing and urban development. That's surprising for two reasons. Just a week ago, Carson's close adviser and friend Armstrong Williams told The Hill that the former Republican presidential candidate had told Trump he was not interested in a Cabinet position because he felt "he has no government experience" and "he's never run a federal agency."
But perhaps more important, Carson has no obvious qualifications for the role. His career has been in medicine, and he was thought to be a top candidate to head the Department of Health and Human Services or possibly the Department of Education. Instead, Trump surprised nearly everyone on Tuesday by tweeting that he was considering Carson for HUD, and then by offering him that role.
Still, Carson has weighed in on matters of housing and urban development—by criticizing efforts to combat housing segregation....
Okay, minute is up. I really didn't want to write this, but, "W" provided the perfect words for this nomination; "Good job, Brownie." It was not meant as an ethnic issue. I just couldn't shake the thought. 
Ben Carson's job does not need qualifications. Actually, if Ben Carson had the qualifications for the job, he would have to struggle for permission to destroy the programs that help Americans with housing.
Look, Trump is not sympathetic to people needing housing. He threw people out of their apartments to build his empire.
With those realities, you tell me what Ben Carson's nomination is going to achieve and it isn't anything with the descriptor "humanitarian."

And there is at least one black guy on the cabinet, too.                

That's interesting. There are noticeable changes in new President after receiving their alignment with the intelligence community of the USA government.

There was a noticeable changes in President Obama when he started his intelligence briefings. His candidate luster was gone. He became different. All I had to do was to realize the USA miltiary got to him.

This is interesting. He is rejecting his briefings while setting up his cabinet. Okay then.

I was not surprised when 2009 rolled around and Chelsea Manning decided President Obama broke his promise to end the war in Iraq. The military and the intelligence briefings caused Obama a pause in his promise to the people.

For activists that look on to notice how the USA applies an enormous military to the world I always wonder what the heck goes on to change the posture of a President-Elect. President Obama was a US Senator and all of a sudden he was backing away from his promises to his electorate. The military and the intelligent community must have one horrific agenda they serve up everyday.

November 23, 2016
By Greg Miller, Adam Entous

...A senior U.S. official (click here) who receives the same briefing delivered to President Barack Obama each day said that devoting time to such sessions would help Trump get up to speed on world events.
"Trump has a lot of catching up to do," the official said.
Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and a senior member of Trump's transition team, dismissed the issue, saying that Trump has devoted significant attention to security matters even while meeting with world leaders and assembling his administration.
"National security is Donald Trump's No. 1 priority and I think he's taking it very seriously," Nunes said in an interview. "Look how many leaders he's met with, how many phone calls he's done, positions he's filled. People who are being critical need to get a life."...

In the same vein, Edward Snowden blew the whistle on the intelligence community. Those two people were Americans and dedicated to their role in protecting the USA and they changed their mind. 

Just sayin'.

The male turkey is at the top left, the female turkey to the right and the hatchlings bottom left.

November 23, 2016
By Jason Bittel

This week, (click here) about 46 million turkeys will appear on tables across the United States. As families give thanks and try to steer conversations away from politics, they should also give a nod of appreciation to the ancient Mayans, who were the first to domesticate that bird on their plate.

That’s right, the iconic American turkey dinner is from Mexico. Meleagris gallopavo gallopavo—also referred to as “White or dark?”—is a subspecies now extinct in the wild. Early European explorers shipped the bird all over Europe and the Middle East, and in an ironic twist, the Pilgrims are even thought to have brought a few live M. g. gallopavos back to the New World on the Mayflower.

But the true American turkey is Meleagris gallopavo—a sleek, fleet-footed rendition of the Butterball, an animal that soars down out of the trees like a B-52 bomber and makes a hell of a ruckus in the woods as it claws through leaf litter looking for insects and acorns. Seeing one in the wild makes me feel lucky and grateful to American conservationists who stopped these gobblers from going the way of another American staple, the extinct passenger pigeon....

No one is going to spend real money to see Dick Cheney's movie. Maybe if it is in 3D and the punches the audience lands may seem real.

November 23, 2016
By Smalltownhick

Cheney is all but irrelevant now, Mr. Bannon. (click here) Vader died, as did his Empire. Satan was kicked out of Heaven, and will end up bound in chains and cast into The Pit according to Revelations. They are not exactly the kind of people I would hold up as worth emulating. Not the side I would choose.

The Confederacy lost, Mr. Sessions. Their major contributions to history were providing a new term for worthless money, and boosting the flagmaking industry. Not the side I would choose.

The things that the Nazis and the Confederates have in common are:

1) They both lost. Decisively.
2) They stayed in power less than a decade.
3) They caused massive damage and loss of life, destroying priceless and irreplaceable cultural artefacts along the way.
4) They both had to flee their countries in the end, either for the Old West or Argentina, those that weren’t captured and put on trial.

Never embrace the darkness. They always lose in the end. The alt-right will become just  another bad guy for the video game designers and action movie makers to use, and the good guys will win again.

And both of you will join your heroes in the dumpster of history....

Why would anyone ever want to make a movie about Dick Cheney? Cheney is not fascinating. There is nothing fascinating about him. He was willing to be an idiot of a CEO of a petroleum company facing potential bankruptcy if the books Cheney cooked didn't receive an infusion of federal money. Dick Cheney is a clown in the circus of Wall Street. He is one of the worst clowns of wealth that ever existed. Why be fascinated with that?

All those that want to see a movie about Dick Cheney raise your hand! See, no one wants to go and Adam McKay will lose the last of his shirts.

If Adam McKay wants to do a favor for the country, follow Liz Cheney around and catch her at being her father's daughter.

November 22, 2016
By Joey Nolfi
After delving into the devastating 2008 financial crisis (click here) with his Oscar-winning 2015 feature The Big Short, Adam McKay is again looking to real-world inspiration for his latest project. 
EW has confirmed the filmmaker will direct a currently untitled drama about Dick Cheney for Paramount, based on a screenplay he wrote shortly after winning an Academy Award for writing The Big Short at February’s Oscar ceremony. He will reportedly shop the script to actors in the near future. 
Cheney, who served as vice president under George W. Bush between 2001 and 2009, was a staunch supporter of the Iraq war, and infamously shot his quail-hunting partner, Texas attorney Harry Whittington, by accident in 2006. 
“I’ve always found Cheney fascinating,” McKay told Deadline, which first reported news of the film’s development. “Questions of what drove him, what his beliefs were; but once we started digging I was astounded at how much he had shaped modern America’s place in the world and how shocking the methods were by which he gained his power.”...
November 23 
by Eric Beech

The U.S. Justice Department (click here) said on Wednesday that Bechtel Corp and AECOM Energy and Construction Inc have agreed to pay $125 million to resolve allegations they improperly charged the government for work at a nuclear treatment plant in Washington state.

Bechtel Corp and URS Energy and Construction Inc, now known as AECOM, allegedly charged the Energy Department for deficient nuclear quality materials, services, and testing that was provided at the Hanford Site near Richland, Washington, the Justice Department said in a statement.    

There will be constitutional amendments proposed whiel DeVos destroys the pubilc school system.

This is another bid for a Christian theocracy. Her amendment to the Michigan State Constitution was rejected by the Supreme Court. An amendment to the USA Consitution will require 2/3 rds vote in both houses and/or "A Convention of States." There is already an existing non-profit to achieve "A Convention of States."

"Compact for America" (click here)

The Evangelicals that run non-profits all over the world already did their handy work in Russia. Now, Russia has been tapped to change the democracy of the USA to a theocracy.

The elections of 2018 has to focus on the oppression of women and the LGBTQ community as well as the attempt to dismantle the education infrastructure of the USA and returning to exactly what I stated under "W" would happen. The public school systems will be no more and only the people that can pay for their children's education will do so while other parents will have to resort to an electronic education for their children.

The election of 2020 will have the entire election process dismantled or will be an election whereby Donald Trump is tossed out on his hiney.

Democrats need to be making their plans for a 50 state solution and put pressure on the radicals in the Trump administration. 


November 23, 2016
By Trudy Ring

Donald Trump (click here) has announced another cabinet pick that’s distressing to LGBT people and progressives in general — billionaire and antigay activist Betsy DeVos for secretary of Education.
DeVos and her husband, Richard DeVos, Jr., derive their wealth from Michigan-based Amway, a company cofounded by his father that specializes in direct sales of home, health, and beauty products. Members of the DeVos family are major donors to right-wing causes, including the fight against marriage equality.
Betsy and Richard DeVos headed the effort to amend Michigan’s constitution to ban same-sex marriage and gave $200,000 to the campaign, Raw Story notes. Voters approved the amendment in 2004; it was struck down, along with other states’ anti–marriage equality laws, by the U.S. Supreme Court last year.
The Douglas and Maria DeVos Foundation, funded by Amway president Doug DeVos, Richard’s brother, donated $500,000 to the National Organization for Marriage in 2009 as it fought marriage equality in several states. The DeVos patriarch, Richard DeVos Sr., has also given to anti–marriage equality efforts, and back in the 1980s, serving on President Reagan’s AIDS commission, had told people with the disease, “You are responsible for your actions too, you know. Conduct yourself properly.”...

Donald Trump is going to become very frustrated with the government and it's processes.

USA infrastructure in the way of agencies and restructuring would require at the very least a public comment period of several months before any changes were realized. 

The laws and infrastructure of the USA is not OWNED by the President. Those laws and infrastructure were developed over a lengthy time span and are owned by the people. The people must have a voice in it's government and when major changes take place it requires a public comment period before changes are instituted. That is the case with all the executive branch agencies. 

It is going to be a circus. If Donald Trump simply sits in the Oval Office and writes Executive Orders, there will be lawsuits to intercept his dictatorship.

That is extremely foolish.

...His transition team (click here) is also talking about curtailing NASA’s ability to study climate change....

That is nothing but a partisan priority.

The Climate Crisis is real and effects every aspect of American life. The idea the USA is going to turn a blind eye to a highly destructive force that taps into economic growth is simply a partisan issue that needs to reflect REALITY.

...“We see NASA in an exploration role, in deep space research,” he said. “Earth-centric science is better placed at other agencies where it is their prime mission.”

In the piece, it becomes clear that what Walker really dislikes is NASA’s research on global warming, which he called “heavily politicized” without any justification. (Walker, who was the Republican chair of the House science committee from 1995 to 1997, claimed that “half” the world’s climatologists doubt the human role in global warming — that’s just not true at all.)...

Who then NOAA? The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration? 

The analysis garnered from satellite data is a conducted by both NOAA and NASA. NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration are the satellite people. 

NOAA and NASA are some of the most qualified scientists in this country. They don't alone own that designation, but, the USA has a proud line up of scientists that need to continue to do what they are doing. NASA and NOAA both are required to conduct the assessments of a planet under stress to the point of breaking.

If there exists politics at NASA, which is difficult to do with numbers and measurements, then stop politicizing the climate crisis and do something about it!

NASA does a lot of the work that measures the atmospheres of Earth. You know the space around Earth. That research is vital to monitor the wellness of Earth.

To the right is a diagram of the four basic layers of atmosphere of Earth. There are more than that. No one atmosphere is drawn with a "Sharpie" knowing there is another change in properties. The gaseous layers of Earth are more homogenous than that. It is impossible to separate the monitoring of the climate crisis by religating arbitrary responsibility to NOAA or NASA. Both agencies are responsible for this planet as it should be.

For those that are myopic about Earth, there is a reality not appreciated.

Earth is in space. NASA reported a change in Earth's axis when the 2004 Christmas Tsunami occurred. That information is not minor information. NASA has to be involved with climate and Earth's physical state.

The Native American nations need to join with the other organizations of casinos to bring about a better understanding of their culture.

Artist Lou Ann Merkle (left) and former Philadelphia restaurateur Judy Wicks with Merkle’s banner they will be taking to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota in support of those protesting a pipeline (“Wopila” means “Thanks” in Lakota Sioux). Wicks has arranged donations to feed 2000 people at a Thanksgiving dinner.

November 23, 2016

By Jeff Gammage

People know Judy Wicks (click here) as the founder of the popular White Dog Cafe, but she won't be serving Thanksgiving dinner to anyone in Philadelphia this year.

She'll be 1,635 miles west, at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota, where hundreds of American Indians are leading a tense protest against construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Wicks organized a 50-person brigade to provide a hearty Thanksgiving dinner to demonstrators - given in gratitude, she said, to those who have put themselves on the dangerous front line of a battle over clean water....

There is every reason for casinos, including those of the Native American nations, to form a coalition and solve the problems they face. Just because Donald Trump is a business man and involved with casinos there are valid reasons for him to receive a delegation of casinos to bring about an understanding of their problems and pitfalls. 

The Native American nations have a very interesting history, including the development of casinos on their land. The casinos helped raise the Native American nations out of poverty. They own successful casinos and hotels. I think the Native Americans can bring a special understanding of their culture to facilitate an improved relationship with the president-elect.

This is not slight of hand or tricky words, it is a man elected into the executive branch of the USA who can bring about effective legislation that would address the unique business of casinos, including that of the Native American casinos. The casinos were necessary to develop to improve the lives of the Native American tribes. It is best these cultures are protected and not exploited by lobbyists who cause them more harm than help.

I might add, Donald Trump ran a campaign that did not depend on corporate monies. In that lies the reality he never wanted entanglements with American business of any kind. I am sure there were donations that can be called up as questionable and most probably should; but, the fact his primary run depended heavily on free media exposure, the conflict of interest is minimized.

The truth is the truth. Donald Trump was the one person in the Tea Party that could run for the presidency without finger pointing to corruption. If Donald Trump can have a White House without crony corruption he will sincerely impress the American people.

I see Argentina is not among the current holdings. (click here)

Baptism by fire!

November 23, 2016
by Kristen Welker and Richie Duchon 

...South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (click here) has accepted Donald Trump's offer to be his ambassador to the United Nations. In a statement Wednesday morning, Haley said "I always expected to finish the remaining two years of my second term as governor," but added she was "moved to accept this new assignment" out of a "sense of duty."

"When the President believes you have a major contribution to make to the welfare of our nation, and to our nation's standing in the world, that is a calling that is important to heed," Haley said, adding that she "remain as governor until the U.S. Senate acts affirmatively on my nomination."... 

Congratulations to Governor Haley. It is a daunting challenge to temper the movement of war into diplomacy that works.

Every Governor in the USA have some foreign affairs exposure, but, it usually revolves around the state's economy.  Governor Haley had strong words regarding the Trump campaign and the depersonalizing of Mexicans and Muslims through statements of hate. She is not a likely person to reverse her values and morality to pander to an unpopular president in more than the majority of voters in the USA.

I like Governor Haley and have no doubt she will apply her expertise to her new title of Ambassador to the United Nations. I am confident she will be welcomed to demonstrate her diplomatic skills among a global population of Ambassador.

The world is a bit tentative in it's stability in several regions of the world. She will have to build relationships with ambassadors from Iran, Russia, Syria, Japan, South Korea and many African countries with troubling issues.

North Korea's Ambassador to the United Nations is Sin Son-ho. The North Korean mission recently experienced a shake up when it's second ranking diplomat in Great Britain defected to South Korea.

18 August 2016
By AFT and Ted Thornhill 

The North Korean diplomat who defected to South Korea has said that he was 'sick and tired' of Kim Jong-un's rule and worried about paying London's Congestion Charge.... 

...'When I drive out from my embassy I have to think (click here) - what about congestion charges?' he said.
A privileged background and powerful connections with the ruling elite back in Pyongyang appear to have provided the springboard for Thae's successful defection to South Korea, analysts said Thursday. 
'The embassy in London is reserved only for some of the foreign ministry's top officials,' said Victor Cha, director of Asian studies for the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington....

This defection is not as surprising as it may appear. Thae Yong-Ho has a very long history of North Korean diplomacy in his family. We have witnessed some very alarming deaths under the new dictator, Kim Jong-un. I am sure he will find welcome in South Korea and while he is the highest ranking Ambassador to defect from North Korea, it is not surprising he came to that decision. 

The Congestion Charge is an £11.50 daily charge for driving a vehicle within the charging zone between 07:00 and 18:00, Monday to Friday. The easiest way to pay the charge is by registering for Congestion Charge Auto Pay. There are a range of exemptions and discounts available to certain vehicles and individuals.

The Charge is a necessary deterrent to grid lock in London.

Oppressed voters and an inappropriate FBI Director caused Hillary Clinton's lack of electoral votes.

November 23, 2016
By Vanessa Friedman, Maggie Haberman and Alan Rappeport
...Hillary Clinton (click here) has widened her lead in the popular vote to 1.5 percentage points, a spread not seen for a losing candidate since the disputed election of 1876....

I thought Mr. Trump's reply to the question about the electoral college interesting. He stated he has long disliked the electoral college and if the popular vote were the determinate factor he would have adjusted his campaign and won anyway.

Volkswagen is making a change in their portfolio of products.

It had been a very bad habit of the "W" administration to look the other way when it came to cutting safety margins on consumer products in the USA. The VW issue is only one of the many product failures inherited by the Obama Administration. 

The folly of allowing consumer products to be sold with product flaws that enhance illegitimate profits are lawsuits. Those lawsuits are legitimate and exist even with all the oppression of these legal remedies in the USA law. There is a basic underestanding of contract law when consumers purchase products, so these lawsuits are not going away. Among the sting felt by Wall Street corporations and companies it has been the auto industry witnessing their fair share. 

There is absolutely NO REASON to short change consumers on safety. It can cause the fail of a company in a profound way. When the consumers are at risk for injury or worse because of a product, that cannot tolerated. The Ameican people are also not guinea pigs to test the profit over consumer safety. One of the valued aspects within the culture of the American people is the striving for longevity. That striving has basis in a life insured by safety margins. Those margins are in place for a reason. Those safety margins have been developed over a century of time often beginning with the dissolution of child labor laws. This aspect of safety is culturally based in profoundly important precepts to the life of Americans.

What occurred with the VW errors in their product performance has caused senior management in Germany to rethink their strategy for products in the future. They have taken this concern for safety seriously and transformed it into a better strategy of their portfolio of products. I applaud VW and am looking forward to their new products. I strongly believe they are doing the very best for their company.

Americans love VW. It would not be the same in the USA if this company failed and did not come back to the auto market with wonderfully new models slated for future development. I can't wait. Thank you to VW for taking Americans seriously and the profound worry this country has about our safety including our climate. The future looks very promising.

November 21, 2016
Frankfurt, Germany -- Volkswagen announced plans Friday (click here) to cut 30,000 jobs in a wide-ranging restructuring of its namesake brand as it tries to recover from a scandal over cars rigged to cheat on diesel-emissions tests.
The German company said the job cuts, which account to about 5 percent of its global workforce, are part of a long-term plan to improve profitability and shift resources and investment to electric-powered vehicles and digital services.
At a news conference at Volkswagen's headquarters in Wolfsburg, company officials said 23,000 of the job cuts will be in Germany, and the measures will save about $4 billion a year from 2020.
Volkswagen employs about 120,000 people at its namesake brand in Germany.
The company also said it would hire 9,000 people related to new technology, and that some of those jobs could go to current employees.

When citizens are not earning enough to support disposable income the entire market of consumer goods fails.

The relationship (click here) between price and quantity demanded is the starting point for building a model of consumer behaviour. Measuring the relationship between price and quantity demanded provides information which is used to create a demand schedule, from which a demand curve can be derived. Once a demand curve has been created, other determinants can be added to the model.

These are all interesting factors for supply and demand concepts, but, if income to the largest consumer class (In the USA it is the Middle Class.) is lacking the entire scheme up to invention will fail. 

The Working Poor has incomes that make ends meet, but, they have no disposable income. They rely on charity for clothing, holiday gifts and sometimes subsistence costs. There are charity organizations that will pay utility costs for impoverished families, but, they do so only when the family is facing a shutoff of their utilities. That is something the Working Poor wants to avoid. They definiting want to avoid adverse credit reporting. They want to expand their potential to their low earnings to faciliate modest vacations and their children's birthday gifts.

When the working poor is permanent in a culture it is because they are invisible to law makers. That is typical of the Republicans. The Republicans only see their cronies and their next election. 

The employees of any company when they fall below the poverty line will become dependents of the government even if they are working. The USA welfare program was changed to have people be less dependent and earning in the work place. That has been a failure as well. Even when the poor work they do not earn enough to move out of impoverishment permanently. 

The overtime potential was a real way of providing employers with a work force willing to work those extra hours and even seeking them out while allowing impoverished citizens a real chance to reach for the American Dream of home ownership.

The damage done by this judge is profound and expands the sheer desire to work. This judge has trapped children into a subsistence working poor and will not learn the rewards of work in upward movement through a society that thrives on ambition.

The minimum wage has to be raised to remove the working poor permanently from the federal budget. The Republicans increase the debt by allowing oppression of the working poor. The states can accomplish the minimum wage and increase the demand for housing market. I strongly suggest the states examine their economy and where to increase the demand; I think they will find their working poor still struggling and unable to increase major purchases of new cars and home ownership. 

MOVE THESE PEOPLE OUT OF IMPOVERISHMENT AND END THE EVER INCREASING NATIONAL DEBT. Simply removing food stamps and welfare is not the answer for these people. THEY ARE NOT LAZY. THEY ARE NOT AT ALL LAZY. They are permanently oppressed and failing to achieve as their birthright promised them and their chldren. 

There are real reasons why the majority of the working poor are in the south and in Red States!

Enforced impoverishment in the USA. Happy Holidays from Texas.

The Wall Street wealthy get wealthier and the American Working Poor get poorer.

November 23, 2016
By Michael A. Memoli

A Texas judge blocked President Obama's (click here) bid to expand overtime pay protections to millions of Americans on Tuesday, thwarting a key presidential priority just days before it was set to take effect.

The Labor Department rule would have doubled the salary level at which hourly workers must be paid extra for overtime pay, from $23,660 to $47,476. Siding with business groups including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Texas District Judge Amos L. Mazzant III halted it.

The rule, finalized in May, represented the first such change in more than a decade and was hailed at the time as the most consequential action the Obama administration could take for middle-class workers without congressional involvement.

Plaintiffs had argued the Labor Department acted beyond its authority under the Fair Labor Standards Act. 

The administration said more than 4 million salaried workers stood to benefit from the change when it took effect Dec. 1....