xtitsx: (Default)
( 30 May 2017 05:10 pm)
it's been nearly twenty weeks since Donald Trump became the 45th President of these United States.
it still doesn't seem right, does it?

i was just as shocked by Trump's victory as anybody on Election Day but i said to myself “whatever, let's see where this ride will take us...”
it was cynicism speaking, the same 'one-bastard-is-no-better-then-another-bastard' logic that had me vote for Nader and Gary Johnson and Jill Stein and any other whack-a-doo outsider candidate on the ballots below them.
i knew that Hillary Clinton's corporatism would ultimately be less offensive then Trump's medley of bluster and cluelessness but Hillary Clinton was no Bernie Sanders so i didn't really have a dog in the fight.
plus, i enjoyed a bit of schadenfrude in seeing all the Hillary Clinton supporters getting all butthurt on the TV on election night. that was funny.
i went to bed on election night open to the idea that maybe something good might be had from Trump's brand of populism.
if President Trump wants to spend his quixotic political capital doing things to restore the American working class then there are areas where we can find common ground.
infrastructure spending, reexamining trade deals that allow corporations to outsource jobs to the lowest common denominator, recognizing wealth inequality as a rot on America's economic foundation.
Trump has even talked several times about replacing Obamacare with universal health coverage, though, i don't think he quite understood that that was something his party was against.
despite all evidence to the contrary, i was open to the Trump Administration somehow being an unlikely success.
of course, that's not the way things have panned out.

since Trump became the leader of the free world, everything has went pretty much exactly the way we all expected it to. perhaps worse.
over the past twenty weeks it's been one deluge of bad news after another from the Trump Administration.
as follows, the worst things President Trump has done with his short time in office, ranked in ascending order of how much they offend me.

President Trump appointed a guy to run the EPA who doesn't believe that the EPA should exist, repealing all kinds of rules and regulations that keep water drinkable.
he green-lit the Keystone and Dakota Access Pipelines and proposes drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Reserve, allowing America to remain comfortably addicted to oil rather then developing cleaner sources of energy.

President Trump appointed a lady to run the Department of Education who doesn't believe that the Department of Education should exist, proposing 13.5 percent cuts to public education spending at a time when our schools are as disgraceful and our kids are as dumb as they've ever been.

President Trump's proposed budget is predicated on extreme cuts to domestic spending, crippling social welfare programs and depriving scientific research while diverting that money to military spending.
people will be run off of FoodStamps because spending more on our military then China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, India, France, the U.K. and Japan combined Just Isn't Enough.
what if they all decide to team up against us?
really, it's just a fucking welfare program for defense contractors and the military-industrial complex.
Trump's budget proposal claims to balance the budget within a decade, but that is based on an economic growth rate that every economist in the world scoffs at.
Trump's plan is to give tax cuts to “job creators” in the hope that the boon to the economy will broaden the tax base, providing more revenue but, that's not how that works.
tax cuts for businesses do not correlate to growth. that's been proven objectively after Reagan.
trickle-down economics is just slash fiction for creeps like Paul Ryan to masturbate to.

President Trump's plan to repeal and replace Obamacare will leave 23 Million people uninsured.
the PSE and i will almost definitely be among that number.
the PSE and i have our problems with Obamacare, but i'd rather have shite insurance then no insurance at all.

President Trump's FCC is about to give away net neutrality, allowing telecommunications providers to hold the internet for ransom.
if the FCC decides that the internet does not need to be regulated, that the free market should decide how people access the internet, then AT&T and Verizon are going to be able to effect a horriable kind of corporate censorship.

President Trump withdrew Federal protections for Transgender kids to use whatever bathrooms they want to use.
that one is a real disappointment.
the Obama Administration's Education and Justice Departments sent out a letter to public schools advising them that under Title IX, they've got to let Transgender kids alone.
all President Trump had to do was let that stand, i thought the Gays had won that particular fight in the culture war, but instead Trump decided that he would please his base by making things that much harder for Queer teenagers.

President Trump has entirely undermined any slight steps towards criminal justice reform.
Attorney General Sessions' ordering U.S. Attorneys to adhere to strict sentencing guidelines and the Justice Department's re-embracing of private, for-profit prisons after the Obama Administration made strides to curtail both offensive practices only serves to secure America's shameful reputation as a prison state.
further, disentangling the Justice Department from their role in local police oversight will only lead to more racial profiling, more police misconduct and more Black kids getting shot by cops.
not all cops are bad guys and not all cops are racists, but having a uniform set of best practices from the Federal government can help minimize the possibility of police encounters going badly.
you would think that would be a good thing, but Jeff Sessions is about as racist as a public figure can be in this day and age and who cares about Black kids?

and then there's President Trump's foreign policy...
America First! wasn't cool when Charles Lindbergh and the German-American Bund were trying to make it safe for Nazis to conquer Europe and the shit isn't cool now, either.
foreign aid is less then one percent of the Federal budget yet Trump proposes cutting 32 percent out of infrastructure development and humanitarian aid.
having Secretary of State Rex Tillerson go out and articulate a foreign policy de-emphasizing human rights in favor of national-security or economic ties is just fucking shameful.
human rights are America's interests and pretending otherwise is not only shortsighted but cruel.

and then there's President Trump's proto-fascist tendencies...
Trump's open contempt for the free press and disrespect for objective truth might be the single biggest threat to the future of liberal democracy.
when we all can't agree on a set of facts and they determine policy based on those facts, when facts become something to argue about and be dismissed and the President can pick and choose the reality he wants to operate in, no reasonable consensus can be had.
also, how comfortable President Trump is with other strongmen around the world is troubling.
complimenting Duterte, praising Erdogan, snuggling up with Putin.
the Leader of the Free World should have nothing but contempt for these kinds of murders and thugs but Trump looks to them as role models who get things done.
then President Trump went on the Bill O'Reilly show and compared America's historic foreign policy with Russia's state-sanctioned murder spree.
he gave Putin exactly what the Kremlin was after, a moral relativism that says 'all States are bad actors, do whatever the hell you want...'
i can criticize American foreign policy, there is a lot to criticize, but the President of the United States can't. not in public.
the President must present the best of what the United States is, a moral authority to be held up as an example for the rest of the world.
but for President Trump, it seems he would rather carry on business as usual, with the United States no better then any other nation.
after a century as the Indispensable Nation, the Trump Administration has relinquished the claim to being Leader of the Free World.
that title belongs to Angela Merkel now, and that fucking sucks because i don't want to have to learn German.

and then there's colluding with an enemy state...
evidence that the Trump Administration had some kind of direct contact with Russia to secure Trump's election seems more and more likely every day.
i'm willing to give President Trump the benefit of the doubt, though i might be being generous.
i am willing to say for now that this clusterfuck of Russian entanglements are the result of incompetence rising to the level of corruption, not corruption done incompetently.
still, there is more then enough smoke to cry fire and send the Trump administration.
colluding with the enemy to influence an election is a hanging offense and i wouldn't think it unseemly to bring out the gallows.
that likely won't happen, but for right now, the odds that President Trump will be in office for a full term are pretty slim.

//[ab irato ad astra]
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September 2017

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