Trump’s drastic Campaign Promises

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Who is the real Donald Trump (and what does he stand for)?

 Here’s hoping Trump flip-flops even more

 How long before the white working class realizes Trump was just scamming them?

Donald Trump pulls a bait and switch on America

Here are some of Donald Trump’s many campaign promises

1. Build a wall along the southern border that's taller than the arenas where Trump holds his rallies, taller than any ladder and one foot taller than the Great Wall of China. This "artistically beautiful" wall will be constructed out of hardened concrete, rebar and steel, and it will be "the greatest wall that you've ever seen" -- so great that the nation will likely one day name it "The Trump Wall." 2. Make Mexico pay for the wall. If Mexico refuses, then the United States will impound all remittance payments taken from the wages of illegal immigrants, cut foreign aid, institute tariffs, cancel visas for Mexican business leaders and diplomats, and increase fees for visas, border-crossing cards and port use.   This will cost
$25 BILLION (Washington Post)

68. Deport the almost 11 million immigrants illegally living in the United States. 69. Triple the number of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers. 70. Continue to allow lowly paid foreign workers to come to the United States on temporary works visas because Trump says they are the only ones who want to pick grapes. 71. End birthright citizenship.

4. Get rid of Common Core because it's "a disaster" and a "very bad thing." Trump says he wants to give local school districts more control and might even eliminate the Department of Education.   The 50 States, in cooperation, went outside the Department of Education
to create COMMON CORE

5. Abolish the Environmental Protection Agency .

6. Get rid of Obamacare .

10. Defund Planned Parenthood.

21. Pick Supreme Court justices who are "really great legal scholars."

23. Strengthen the military .

53. Get rid of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

54. Simplify the U.S. tax code and reduce the number of tax brackets from seven to four. The highest earners would pay a 25-percent tax. The corporate tax rate would fall to 15 percent. Eliminate the "marriage penalty" for taxpayers and get rid of the alternate minimum tax. 55. No longer charge income tax to single individuals earning less than $25,000 per year or couples earning less than $50,000. These people will, however, be required to file a one-page form with the Internal Revenue Service that states: "I win." 57. Allow corporations a one-time window to transfer money being held overseas, charging a much-reduced 10 percent tax. 58. Get rid of most corporate tax loopholes or incentives, but continue to allow taxpayers to deduct mortgage interest and charitable donations from their taxes.   The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center estimated the plan would cut federal revenues by $6.2 trillion over the next decade.
 It would increase the Federal Debt by
$5.3 trillion over the next decade, and raise the ratio of Debt to
Gross Domestic Product
to
105%.

17. Never take a vacation while serving as president.

18. Prosecute Hillary Clinton for her use of a private e-mail server while serving as secretary of state.

20. Stop spending money on space exploration . Encourage private space-exploration companies to expand.

25. Allow Russia to deal with the Islamic State in Syria and/or work with Russian President Vladimir Putin to wipe out shared enemies.  26. "Bomb the s--- out of ISIS." Also bomb oil fields controlled by the Islamic State, then seize the oil and give the profits to military veterans who were wounded while fighting. 27. Target and kill the relatives of terrorists. 28. Shut down parts of the Internet so that Islamic State terrorists cannot use it to recruit American children. 29. Bring back waterboarding, which the Obama administration considers torture. Trump has said he's willing to use interrogation techniques that go even further than waterboarding. Even if such tactics don't work, "they deserve it anyway, for what they're doing."   12. Frequently use the term "radical Islamic terrorism."  13. Temporarily ban most foreign Muslims from entering the United States "until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on." Trump would allow exceptions for dignitaries, business people, athletes and others who have "proven" themselves. 14. Bar Syrian refugees from entering the country and kick out any who are already living here. Trump says wealthy Persian Gulf nations like Saudi Arabia should pay to set up a heavily guarded "safe zone" in Syria. 15. Heavily surveil mosques in the United States. Trump has said he's open to the idea of closing some mosques. 16. Create a database of Syrian refugees. Trump hasn't ruled out creating a database of Muslims in the country.

30. Leave troops in Afghanistan because it's such "a mess." And increase U.S. military presence in the East and South China Seas.

31. Find an "out" clause in the Iran deal and then "totally" renegotiate the whole thing.

40. Bring back jobs from China -- and Mexico, Japan and elsewhere.  43. Aggressively challenge China's power in the world by declaring the country a currency manipulator, adopting a "zero tolerance policy on intellectual property theft and forced technology transfer" and cracking down on China's "lax labor and environmental standards." 44. Rather than throw the Chinese president a state dinner, buy him "a McDonald's hamburger and say we've got to get down to work." 42. Students at Wofford College in South Carolina, where Trump attended a town hall, will all have jobs at graduation.

45. Replace "free trade" with "fair trade." Gather together the "smartest negotiators in the world," assign them each a country and renegotiate all foreign trade deals. 46. Put billionaire hedge fund manager Carl Icahn in charge of trade negotiations with China and Japan, and pick an ambassador to Japan who is "a killer," unlike the current ambassador, Caroline Kennedy.

47. Tell Ford Motor Co.'s president that unless he cancels plans to build a massive plant in Mexico, the company will face a 35 percent tax on cars imported back into the United States. Trump is confident he can get this done before taking office. (Last year he incorrectly said this had already happened.)

48. Force Nabisco to once again make Oreos in the United States. And bully Apple into making its "damn computers" and other products here.

49. Impose new taxes on many imports into the country. Numbers thrown around have included 32 percent, 34 percent and 35 percent.

50. Grow the nation's economy by at least 6 percent.

51. Reduce the $18 trillion national debt by "vigorously eliminating waste, fraud and abuse in the federal government, ending redundant government programs and growing the economy to increase tax revenues."

52. Cut the budget by 20 percent by simply renegotiating.

60. Use "common sense" to fix the mental health system and prevent mass shootings. Find ways to arm more of the "good guys" like him who can take out the "sickos." Get rid of bans on certain types of guns and magazines so that "good, honest people" can own the guns of their choice. 63. Allow concealed-carry permits to be recognized in all 50 states.

61. Impose a minimum sentence of five years in federal prison for any violent felon who commits a crime using a gun, with no chance for parole or early release.

62. Fix the background check system used when purchasing guns to ensure states are properly uploading criminal and health records.

64. Sign an executive order calling for the death penalty for anyone found guilty of killing a police officer.

65. Provide more funding for police training.

66. And provide more funding for drug treatment, especially for heroin addicts.

67. On the first day in office, terminate President Obama's executive orders related to immigration. This includes getting rid of "sanctuary cities" that Trump says have become refuges for criminals.

see all 76 84% of Republicans get their news from FOX NEWS

If you voted for Trump because he’s ‘anti-establishment,’ guess what: You got conned  -- the people Trump is considering for his Cabinet is a collection of Republican Politicians and Corporate Plutocrats — no different from any Republican administration.

 #Calexit In the Spring of 2019, Californians will go to the polls in a historic vote to decide by referendum: California to exit the Union


 

The 13 most amazing findings in the 2016 exit poll There was no surge of Female and Latino voters.
Education level mattered hugely.

Democratic Emotions won out over Logic

Obama got 65.9 million votes in 2012 and Hillary got 61.1 in 2016--
around 5 million Democrats choose to effectively DO NOTHING.

In 2008, Barack Obama won the presidential election with 69.5 million votes, and in 2012, he pulled in a less impressive (but nonetheless sufficient) 65.9 million.

In this year's election, far fewer voters cast their ballots for either major party: Donald Trump won the electoral college and the presidency with a mere 60.5 million votes, losing the popular vote to Hillary Clinton's 61.1 million.

 The low numbers are surprising given that the number of registered voters reached a record 200 million in 2016, with most of the new voters registered as Democrats. The fact that they didn't turn out in high numbers contributed to Trump's win.

With high stakes in this election—most Americans had a historically low opinion of Trump and even considered him unfit to be president—pundits expected that the average American would want to defeat the Republican nominee. And the only way to do so, realistically, was to vote for Clinton. But millions of voters chose not to, instead staying home or selecting write-in or third-party candidates. Why?

The trolley problem might explain this voter behavior. In the classic thought experiment, a trolley is barreling down its track, about to hit a group of five people. You have access to a lever that can redirect the trolley to another track, saving the group of five but dooming a single person on the second track. The problem forces you to choose between taking action and killing one person or remaining inactive and letting five die—it pits your personal morality ("I don't kill people") against a cold, Spock-ian assessment of the greater good ("I should save as many people as possible"). “The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.”

—Spock in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Faced with a standard trolley problem, about 90 percent of people will choose the greater good, pulling the switch and saving the larger number of people. This changes, however, when feelings get involved. When they were given scenarios with strong imagery or emotions—they saw the victims clearly or one of them was a relative—participants were more likely to fall back on their personal morality and let the larger group perish.

Which brings us back to 2016's incredibly emotional election. Third-party voters often phrase their decision as a moral choice: They don't want one candidate to win, but they "can't bring themselves" to vote for the other. (Clinton also had a low favorability rating going into this election, although it wasn't as low as Trump's.) That mindset turned this year's election into a type of trolley problem: Voters knew that a Trump win would harm women, minorities, immigrants, members of the LGBTQ community, and others. However, to "save" these marginalized groups, they would have had to take action, transgressing their personal ethics to vote for a candidate they disliked or even distrusted.

The fact that millions of Americans instead chose to protect their moral self-image and do nothing suggests that their emotions won out over logic. For these voters, the ballot was a personal ethical decision rather than a means to an end.

source Popular Science By Sophie Bushwick

7 Reasons Donald Trump Won The Presidential Election

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84% of Republicans get their news from FOX NEWS

Trump supporters incorrect perception of crime rate

 

At any given time Coler says he’s got between  20 and 25 FAKE NEWS writers. And it was one of them that wrote the story that an FBI agent who leaked Clinton emails was killed. Coler says that over 10 days the site got 1.6 million views.

Coler says his writers have tried to write fake news for liberals — but they just never take the bait.

I’m a Muslim, a woman and an immigrant. I voted for Trump (Wash.Post).

  • "I am a single mother who can’t afford health insurance under Obamacare. "
  • "The president’s mortgage-loan modification program, “HOPE NOW,” didn’t help me".
  • Opposed to the decision by President Obama and the Democratic Party to tap dance around the “Islam” in Islamic State.
  • "The revelations of multimillion-dollar donations to the Clinton Foundation from Qatar and Saudi Arabia killed my support for Clinton". (after reading Clinton email "that poisoned the well for me". In it, Clinton told aide John Podesta: “We need to use our diplomatic and more traditional intelligence assets to bring pressure on the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which are providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL, and other radical Sunni groups in the region.” ) ???

 

Rural voters supported the tea party's quest to shrink government not out of any belief in the virtues of small government but because they did not trust the government to help “people like them.”
  • General sense of being on the short end of the stick. Rural people felt like they're not getting their fair share. "Nobody’s paying attention, nobody’s coming out here and asking us what we think. Decisions are made in the cities, and we have to abide by them."
  • Weren’t getting their fair share of stuff, that they weren’t getting their fair share of public resources. That often came up in perceptions of taxation.
  • Were not getting respect. They would say: "The real kicker is that people in the city don’t understand us. They don’t understand what rural life is like, what’s important to us and what challenges that we’re facing. They think we’re a bunch of redneck racists".
  • "Whatever, we’ve been in a recession for decades. What’s the big deal? '
  • They think "the problem is that it’s all going to the government. So let’s roll government back.”
  • Rural people seem to hate government and want to shrink it, even though government provides them with a lot of benefits. Are people just being fooled or deluded? 84% of Republicans get their news from Fox News

Trump's 100-day action plan

On the first day of my term of office, my administration will immediately pursue the following six measures to clean up the corruption and special interest collusion in Washington, DC:

* FIRST, propose a Constitutional Amendment to impose term limits on all members of Congress; Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, long an opponent of term limits, threw cold water on this idea Wednesday, saying “it will not be on the agenda in the Senate” and "I would say we have term limits now — they're called elections." A constitutional amendment must be proposed by Congress or a constitutional convention (the latter has never happened). Since the president does not have a constitutional role in the amendment process, this is not likely to happen without Senate leadership on board.
* SECOND, a hiring freeze on all federal employees to reduce federal workforce through attrition (exempting military, public safety, and public health);
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are some 2.75 million civilian federal employees as of November. That includes 593,000 Postal Service workers. The number of federal workers has remained fairly stable during the Obama administration and is in fact as low as it has been since the mid-1960s. The federal workforce did grow a bit early on in the Obama administration, largely owing to increased hiring at the departments of Defense, Homeland Security and Veterans Affairs. Trump wants to exempt public safety employees from a freeze, and if he wants to hire more Immigration and Customs Enforcement patrol officers, it seems unlikely he will be able to shrink the federal workforce much through attrition, as retirement rates average around 3.5 percent a year, according to a Government Accountability Office report. Still, that report says some 600,000 federal employees will be eligible to retire as of next September.

Trump’s efforts to freeze the federal workforce are likely to find support on Capitol Hill. Republicans have proposed shrinking the number of federal employees by as much as 10 percent.

* THIRD, a requirement that for every new federal regulation, two existing regulations must be eliminated;
Reducing the number of federal regulations is an unending quest for Republicans in Congress and conservative groups, which charge regulations hurt businesses and slow economic growth. The Competitive Enterprise Institute, which tracks the number of pages in the Federal Register, reports it is up to 79,380 for the year, with a month and a half to go.

So where to start for President-elect Trump, who at one campaign stop said 70 percent of regulations "can go”? One likely place: the environment. An EPA power plant rule aims to cut carbon emissions by nearly a third by 2030. Trump couldn’t simply veto the regulation, however, although Congress could vote to overturn it. But a Trump administration could certainly weaken enforcement of the standard.

The banking sector is another place for Trump to focus. During the campaign he said he wanted to "get rid of" the Dodd-Frank law that reshaped the banking industry after the 2008 recession. If repealing the entire law seems a heavy lift, one possibility would be to try to eliminate the so-called Volcker rule, which prohibits banks from making risky investments.

Republicans make no secret of their dislike of the recent Federal Communications Commission ruling that protects net neutrality. The Trump administration could also attempt to repeal a regulation that makes more workers eligible for overtime.

* FOURTH, a 5 year-ban on White House and Congressional officials becoming lobbyists after they leave government service;  
* FIFTH, a lifetime ban on White House officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign government;  
* SIXTH, a complete ban on foreign lobbyists raising money for American elections.
On the same day, I will begin taking the following 7 actions to protect American workers:
 
* FIRST, I will announce my intention to renegotiate NAFTA or withdraw from the deal under Article 2205 Renegotiating NAFTA “would not be a trivial matter," said Eswar Prasad, professor of trade policy at Cornell University. The agreement, approved by Congress more than two decades ago, ties together the economies of the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Changing it would hurt many U.S. businesses and farmers that have well-established supply chains and distribution systems based on it. Still, Trump could significantly undermine NAFTA by using his administration’s enforcement mechanisms to hassle companies, "making life potentially difficult" for anyone doing cross-border business, Prasad said. "Could NAFTA be killed? Not in letter, but in spirit — yes," he said.
* SECOND, I will announce our withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership  
* THIRD, I will direct my Secretary of the Treasury to label China a currency manipulator  
* FOURTH, I will direct the Secretary of Commerce and U.S. Trade Representative to identify all foreign trading abuses that unfairly impact American workers and direct them to use every tool under American and international law to end those abuses immediately  
* FIFTH, I will lift the restrictions on the production of $50 trillion dollars' worth of job-producing American energy reserves, including shale, oil, natural gas and clean coal.  
* SIXTH, lift the Obama-Clinton roadblocks and allow vital energy infrastructure projects, like the Keystone Pipeline, to move forward The Obama administration blocked construction of the northern stretch of the Keystone XL pipeline by denying TransCanada Corp. a needed State Department permit. A Trump administration could greenlight the project by granting that permit. TransCanada says it is eager to start work. Climate activists complain the pipeline will encourage greater development of carbon-intensive oil from the Canadian tar sands.
* SEVENTH, cancel billions in payments to U.N. climate change programs and use the money to fix America's water and environmental infrastructure The U.S. government does not give billions of dollars to the  United Nations for climate work.  
The U.S. government gives about $10 million a year to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), created in 1992 under a global treaty signed by President George H. W. Bush.  Some of the money helps support the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a scientific organization that collects research on climate and advises the UNFCCC.
In 2014, President Obama said the U.S. intends to contribute $3 billion dollars to the Green Climate Fund, as part of a pledge by the developed nations to help less developed nations deal with the deleterious effects of climate change.  The UN has promised to raise a total of $100 billion a year for that Fund and start disbursing it in 2020.  The Green Climate Fund is an independent body accountable to the United Nations but not part of it.  
In 2008, President Bush pledged $2 billion for climate aid to developing countries.
Additionally, on the first day, I will take the following five actions to restore security and the constitutional rule of law:
* FIRST, cancel every unconstitutional executive action, memorandum and order issued by President Obama
The president can revoke President Obama’s executive action in 2012 that created an immigration program known as DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. This policy allows certain immigrants in the U.S. illegally who were brought to the country as kids to receive protection from deportation and work permits. As of June 30, there have been 1.3 million cases approved.

It’s uncertain whether Trump will allow the existing DACA permits to expire on their own or dissolve them the day he signs the order. In either case, the young immigrants will lose their protected status and be eligible for deportation.

* SECOND, begin the process of selecting a replacement for Justice Scalia from one of the 20 judges on my list, who will uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States Heritage Foundation, and the ideology represented by those potential nominees ranges from very conservative to even more conservative.  There are some common themes, however. A general hostility to claims of “reproductive freedom,” from abortion to contraception; a hostility to government regulations, ranging from rules aimed at protecting the environment from coal-fired utilities to rules limiting access to guns.
* THIRD, cancel all federal funding to Sanctuary Cities Sanctuary cities are American cities that have policies protecting immigrants in the country illegally from federal immigration law, such as restricting police from turning them over to federal agents. Trump has not said which federal funds would be withheld from sanctuary cities. A few of these cities are Seattle, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami and Austin, Texas.
* FOURTH, begin removing the more than 2 million criminal illegal immigrants from the country and cancel visas to foreign countries that won't take them back Trump has vowed to expand the definition of “criminal alien,” for example, to include immigrants in the U.S. illegally who are convicted of drunken driving. Without the approval of Congress, a President Trump could instruct his immigration agents to round up every immigrant convicted of a crime and deport them all. There are currently 23 countries considered “recalcitrant” by ICE because they will not accept criminal aliens sent home from the U.S. -- among them Afghanistan, Cuba, Iran and Zimbabwe. Trump could instruct his State Department to withhold visas for the citizens of these countries unless they agree to accept their deportees.
* FIFTH, suspend immigration from terror-prone regions where vetting cannot safely occur. All vetting of people coming into our country will be considered extreme vetting.  

Next, I will work with Congress to introduce the following broader legislative measures and fight for their passage within the first 100 days of my Administration:

  1. Middle Class Tax Relief And Simplification Act. An economic plan designed to grow the economy 4% per year and create at least 25 million new jobs through massive tax reduction and simplification, in combination with trade reform, regulatory relief, and lifting the restrictions on American energy. The largest tax reductions are for the middle class. A middle-class family with 2 children will get a 35% tax cut. The current number of brackets will be reduced from 7 to 3, and tax forms will likewise be greatly simplified. The business rate will be lowered from 35 to 15 percent, and the trillions of dollars of American corporate money overseas can now be brought back at a 10 percent rate.
Trump’s tax plan would cut income tax rates while capping deductions for the wealthy. He would also reduce the business tax rate to 15 percent and eliminate the estate tax. Workers at every income level would enjoy lower taxes under Trump’s plan, but the biggest beneficiaries by far are the very wealthy. Estimates from the Tax Policy Center and the Tax Foundation estimate that the top 1 percent of income households would see their after-tax incomes rise by 10.2 to 13 percent under Trump’s plan, while “middle income” households -- those from the 40th to the 60th percentile -- would see an increase of 1.3 to 1.8 percent. Tax savings at all levels could be higher from economic growth, but the wealthy still see the biggest bump.
  1. End The Offshoring Act. Establishes tariffs to discourage companies from laying off their workers in order to relocate in other countries and ship their products back to the U.S. tax-free.
 
  1. American Energy & Infrastructure Act. Leverages public-private partnerships, and private investments through tax incentives, to spur $1 trillion in infrastructure investment over 10 years. It is revenue neutral.
 
  1. School Choice And Education Opportunity Act. Redirects education dollars to give parents the right to send their kid to the public, private, charter, magnet, religious or home school of their choice. Ends common core, brings education supervision to local communities. It expands vocational and technical education, and make 2 and 4-year college more affordable.
The big question surrounding Trump’s school choice plan is this: How will he pay for it? Not with new money, he has been clear, but “redirects education dollars” is vague. The fact is, much of the money the U.S. government spends in schools goes to districts that serve low-income, at-risk students. Under Trump’s plan, at least some of these so-called Title I dollars would likely end up going to more affluent districts or leaving the public system entirely.

Here’s the other headline in this graph: “Ends common core.” Learning standards, including the Common Core, are adopted (and replaced) at the state level, and the new federal education law, ESSA, will make it very difficult for Trump to change that. Here’s why. He could try to use federal dollars to push states away from the Common Core, but, again, the new law is clear about the government’s right/ability to do such pushing: It can’t. For more unpacking of Trump’s education plan, check this out.      

  1. Repeal and Replace Obamacare Act. Fully repeals Obamacare and replaces it with Health Savings Accounts, the ability to purchase health insurance across state lines, and lets states manage Medicaid funds. Reforms will also include cutting the red tape at the FDA: there are over 4,000 drugs awaiting approval, and we especially want to speed the approval of life-saving medications.
 The GOP Congress has already demonstrated its willingness to repeal the insurance tax subsidies and Medicaid expansion portions of the Affordable Care Act, along with the requirement that all Americans have health insurance, using a fast-track legislative maneuver known as “reconciliation” that prevents a Democratic filibuster. President Obama vetoed that measure, but President-elect Trump would presumably sign it. The Congressional Budget Office predicts that could strip health insurance coverage from more than 20 million people -- although the change would most likely be phased in over a couple of years. Trump’s replacement plan is less clear. Health savings accounts would allow more people to buy insurance with pre-tax dollars, and selling insurance across state lines might increase competition and reduce prices. But coverage will very likely remain out of reach for many. The requirement that insurance companies provide coverage to people with pre-existing conditions cannot be repealed through reconciliation. But preserving that requirement without the individual mandate to purchase insurance could create a costly situation in which people wait until they’re sick to buy coverage.
  1. Affordable Childcare and Eldercare Act. Allows Americans to deduct childcare and elder care from their taxes, incentivizes employers to provide on-side childcare services, and creates tax-free Dependent Care Savings Accounts for both young and elderly dependents, with matching contributions for low-income families.
 
  1. End Illegal Immigration Act Fully-funds the construction of a wall on our southern border with the full understanding that the country Mexico will be reimbursing the United States for the full cost of such wall; establishes a 2-year mandatory minimum federal prison sentence for illegally re-entering the U.S. after a previous deportation, and a 5-year mandatory minimum for illegally re-entering for those with felony convictions, multiple misdemeanor convictions or two or more prior deportations; also reforms visa rules to enhance penalties for overstaying and to ensure open jobs are offered to American workers first.
The Washington Post has estimated this wall will cost $25 billion!

Mexico’s president made it clear to President-elect Trump when they met this summer that his government is not willing to finance a border wall. At one point, Trump suggested the wall might be financed by taxing money that Mexican citizens working in the U.S. send home.

  1. Restoring Community Safety Act. Reduces surging crime, drugs and violence by creating a Task Force On Violent Crime and increasing funding for programs that train and assist local police; increases resources for federal law enforcement agencies and federal prosecutors to dismantle criminal gangs and put violent offenders behind bars.
Violent crime has steadily declined over the last 2 decades (tho it rose slightly in 2015)

In 2014, the Obama Justice Department launched the “violence reduction network,” matching troubled cities with a law enforcement analyst and a federal grant official. The program now operates in about 10 cities including Camden, N.J.; Chicago; Detroit and Flint, Mich.; Little Rock, Ark.; Newark, N.J.; Compton, Oakland and Richmond, Calif.; and West Memphis, Ark. It’s not clear whether Trump’s team wants to expand on this idea or scrap it in favor of something else.

The Justice Department traditionally funds training programs for local police and in recent years has offered federal funds to pay for body cameras and bulletproof vests. In a time of tight federal budgets, a popular Bill Clinton-era program that helps localities pay the salaries of police officers for a set time frame has been scaled back somewhat.

In 2016, the Justice Department allocated approximately $119 million to fund the COPS Hiring Program, which enables law enforcement agencies to hire or rehire career law enforcement officers and increase their community policing capacity and crime prevention efforts. Some $12 million has gone to community policing and collaborative reform grants in 2016 and another $12 million is funding the 2016 COPS Anti-Heroin Task Force Program and COPS Anti-Methamphetamine Program grants to state law enforcement agencies.

Most law enforcement in the U.S. remains the responsibility of state and local authorities.

  1. Restoring National Security Act. Rebuilds our military by eliminating the defense sequester and expanding military investment; provides Veterans with the ability to receive public VA treatment or attend the private doctor of their choice; protects our vital infrastructure from cyber-attack; establishes new screening procedures for immigration to ensure those who are admitted to our country support our people and our values
Trump’s defense agenda as described here is hugely ambitious. Republicans and Democrats have warred over the 2011 Budget Control Act, which imposed automatic, across-the-board spending restrictions, since it was first passed. Repealing it even with Republican majorities in both houses of Congress would require new consensus about exempting both defense and nondefense spending from the restrictions, as well as an agreement about how to pay for any new spending that Trump proposes. His VA proposal sounds a lot like the Veterans Choice program that Congress enacted after high-profile VA scandals in 2014, one that enables veterans to go outside the VA system. But as NPR’s Quil Lawrence has reported, even that “fix” now is in need of a new fix.
  1. Clean up Corruption in Washington Act. Enacts new ethics reforms to Drain the Swamp and reduce the corrupting influence of special interests on our politics.

source: FACT CHECK: Donald Trump's First 100 Days Action Plan

Allan Lichtman Professor who predicted 30 years of presidential elections correctly called a Trump win in back in September       The 13 Keys  actually he called a win of the POPULAR VOTE  -- so HE WAS WRONG

The dark rigidity of fundamentalist rural America: a view from the inside

As the aftermath of the election of Donald Trump is being sorted out, a common theme keeps cropping up from all sides: “Democrats failed to understand white, working-class, fly-over America.”

Trump supporters are saying this. Progressive pundits are saying this. Talking heads across all forms of the media are saying this. Even some Democratic leaders are saying this. It doesn’t matter how many people say it, it is complete bullshit. It is an intellectual/linguistic sleight of hand meant to throw attention away from the real problem. The real problem isn’t east coast elites who don’t understand or care about rural America. The real problem is rural America doesn’t understand the causes of their own situations and fears and they have shown no interest in finding out. They don’t want to know why they feel the way they do or why they are struggling because they don’t want to admit it is in large part because of choices they’ve made and horrible things they’ve allowed themselves to believe.

I grew up in rural, Christian, white America. You’d be hard-pressed to find an area in the country that has a higher percentage of Christians or whites. I spent most of the first 24 years of my life deeply embedded in this culture. I religiously (pun intended) attended their Christian services. I worked off and on, on their rural farms. I dated their calico skirted daughters. I camped, hunted, and fished with their sons. I listened to their political rants at the local diner and truck stop. I winced at their racist/bigoted jokes and epithets that were said more out of ignorance than animosity. I have also watched the town I grew up in go from a robust economy with well-kept homes and infrastructure turn into a struggling economy with shuttered businesses, dilapidated homes, and a broken down infrastructure over the past 30 years. The problem isn’t that I don’t understand these people. The problem is they don’t understand themselves, the reasons for their anger/frustrations, and don’t seem to care to know why.

In deep-red white America, the white Christian God is king, figuratively and literally. Religious fundamentalism is what has shaped most of their belief systems. Systems built on a fundamentalist framework are not conducive to introspection, questioning, learning, change. When you have a belief system that is built on fundamentalism, it isn’t open to outside criticism, especially by anyone not a member of your tribe and in a position of power. The problem isn’t “coastal elites don’t understand rural Americans.” The problem is rural America doesn’t understand itself and will NEVER listen to anyone outside their bubble. It doesn’t matter how “understanding” you are, how well you listen, what language you use…if you are viewed as an outsider, your views are automatically discounted. I’ve had hundreds of discussions with rural white Americans and whenever I present them any information that contradicts their entrenched beliefs, no matter how sound, how unquestionable, how obvious, they WILL NOT even entertain the possibility it might be true. Their refusal is a result of the nature of their fundamentalist belief system and the fact I’m the enemy because I’m an educated liberal.

At some point during the discussion, “That’s your education talking,” will be said, derogatorily, as a general dismissal of everything I said. They truly believe this is a legitimate response because to them education is not to be trusted. Education is the enemy of fundamentalism because fundamentalism, by its very nature, is not built on facts. The fundamentalists I grew up around aren’t anti-education. They want their kids to know how to read and write. They are anti-quality, in-depth, broad, specialized education. Learning is only valued up to the certain point. Once it reaches the level where what you learn contradicts doctrine and fundamentalist arguments, it becomes dangerous. I watched a lot of my fellow students who were smart, stop their education the day they graduated high school. For most of the young ladies, getting married and having kids was more important than continuing their learning. For many of the young men, getting a college education was seen as unnecessary and a waste of time. For the few who did go to college, what they learned was still filtered through their fundamentalist belief system. If something they were taught didn’t support a preconception, it would be ignored and forgotten the second it was no longer needed to pass an exam.

Knowing this about their belief system and their view of outside information that doesn’t support it, telling me that the problem is coastal elites not understanding them completely misses the point.

Another problem with rural, Christian, white Americans is they are racists. I’m not talking about white hood-wearing, cross-burning, lynching racists (though some are). I’m talking about people who deep down in their heart of hearts truly believe they are superior because they are white. Their white God made them in his image and everyone else is a less-than-perfect version, flawed and cursed.

The religion in which I was raised taught this. Even though they’ve backtracked on some of their more racist declarations, many still believe the original claims. Non-whites are the color they are because of their sins, or at least the sins of their ancestors. Blacks don’t have dark skin because of where they lived and evolution; they have dark skin because they are cursed. God cursed them for a reason. If God cursed them, treating them as equals would be going against God’s will. It is really easy to justify treating people differently if they are cursed by God and will never be as good as you no matter what they do because of some predetermined status.

Once you have this view, it is easy to lower the outside group’s standing and acceptable level of treatment. Again, there are varying levels of racism at play in rural, Christian, white America. I know people who are ardent racists. I know a lot more whose racism is much more subtle but nonetheless racist. It wouldn’t take sodium pentothal to get most of these people to admit they believe they are fundamentally better and superior to minorities. They are white supremacists who dress up in white dress shirts, ties, and gingham dresses. They carry a Bible and tell you, “everyone’s a child of God” but forget to mention that some of God’s children are more favored than others and skin tone is the criterion by which we know who is and who isn’t at the top of God’s list of most favored children.

For us “coastal elites” who understand evolution, genetics, science…nothing we say to those in fly-over country is going to be listened to because not only are we fighting against an anti-education belief system, we are arguing against God. You aren’t winning a battle of beliefs with these people if you are on one side of the argument and God is on the other. No degree of understanding this is going to suddenly make them less racist, more open to reason and facts. Telling “urban elites” they need to understand rural Americans isn’t going to lead to a damn thing because it misses the causes of the problem.

Because rural, Christian, white Americans will not listen to educated arguments, supported by facts that go against their fundamentalist belief systems from “outsiders,” any change must come from within. Internal change in these systems does happen, but it happens infrequently and it always lags far behind reality. This is why they fear change so much. They aren’t used to it. Of course, it really doesn’t matter whether they like it or not, it, like the evolution and climate change even though they don’t believe it, it is going to happen whether they believe in it or not.

Another major problem with closed-off, fundamentalist belief systems is they are very susceptible to propaganda. All belief systems are to some extent, but fundamentalist systems even more so because there are no checks and balances. If bad information gets in, it doesn’t get out and because there are no internal mechanisms to guard against it, it usually ends up very damaging to the whole. A closed-off belief system is like your spinal fluid—it is great as long as nothing infectious gets into it. If bacteria gets into your spinal fluid, it causes unbelievable damage because there are no white blood cells in it whose job is to fend off invaders and protect the system. This is why things like meningitis are so horrible. Without the protective services of white blood cells in the spinal column, meningitis spreads like wildfire once it’s in and does significant damage in a very short period of time. Once inside the closed-off spinal system, bacteria are free to destroy whatever they want.

The very same is true with closed-off belief systems. Without built-in protective functions like critical analysis, self-reflection, openness to counter-evidence, willingness to re-evaluate any and all beliefs, etc., bad information in a closed-off system ends up doing massive damage in short period of time. What has happened to too many fundamentalist belief systems is damaging information has been allowed in from people who have been granted “expert status.” If someone is allowed into a closed-off system and their information is deemed acceptable, anything they say will readily be accepted and become gospel.

Rural, Christian, white Americans have let in anti-intellectual, anti-science, bigoted, racists into their system as experts like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly, any of the blonde Stepford Wives on Fox, every evangelical preacher on television because they tell them what they want to hear and because they sell themselves as being “one of them.” The truth is none of these people give a rat’s ass about rural, Christian, white Americans except how can they exploit them for attention and money. None of them have anything in common with the people who have let them into their belief systems with the exception they are white and they “speak the same language” of white superiority, God’s will must be obeyed, and how, even though they are the Chosen Ones, they are the ones being screwed by all the people and groups they believe they are superior to.

Gays being allowed to marry are a threat. Blacks protesting the killing of their unarmed friends and family are a threat. Hispanics doing the cheap labor on their farms are somehow viewed a threat. The black president is a threat. Two billion Muslims are a threat. The Chinese are a threat. Women wanting to be autonomous are a threat. The college educated are a threat. Godless scientists are a threat. Everyone who isn’t just like them has been sold to them as a threat and they’ve bought it hook, line, and grifting sinker. Since there are no self-regulating mechanisms in their belief systems, these threats only grow over time. Since facts and reality don’t matter, nothing you say to them will alter their beliefs. “President Obama was born in Kenya, is a secret member of the Muslim Brotherhood who hates white Americans and is going to take away their guns.” I feel ridiculous even writing this, it is so absurd, but it is gospel across large swaths of rural America. Are rural, Christian, white Americans scared? You’re damn right they are. Are their fears rational and justified? Hell no. The problem isn’t understanding their fears. The problem is how to assuage fears based on lies in closed-off fundamentalist belief systems that don’t have the necessary tools for properly evaluating the fears.

I don’t have a good answer to this question. When a child has an irrational fear, you can deal with it because they trust you and are open to possibilities. When someone doesn’t trust you and isn’t open to anything not already accepted as true in their belief system, there really isn’t much, if anything you can do. This is why I think the whole, “Democrats have to understand and find common ground with rural America,” is misguided and a complete waste of time. When a 3,000-year-old book that was written by uneducated, pre-scientific people, subject to translation innumerable times, edited with political and economic pressures from popes and kings, is given higher intellectual authority than facts arrived at from a rigorous, self-critical, constantly re-evaluating system that can and does correct mistakes, no amount of understanding, no amount of respect, no amount of evidence is going to change their minds, assuage their fears.

Do you know what does change the beliefs of fundamentalists, sometimes? When something becomes personal. Many a fundamentalist has changed his mind about the LGBT community once his loved ones started coming out of the closet. Many have not. But those who did, did so because their personal experience came in direct conflict with what they believe. My own father is a good example of this. For years I had long, sometimes heated discussions with him about gay rights. Being the good religious fundamentalist he is, he could not even entertain the possibility he was wrong. The Church said it was wrong, so therefore it was wrong. No questions asked. No analysis needed. This changed when one of his adored stepchildren came out of the closet. He didn’t do a complete 180. He has a view that tries to accept gay rights while at the same time viewing being gay as a mortal sin because his need to have his belief system be right outweighs everything else.

This isn’t uncommon. Deeply held beliefs are usually only altered, replaced under catastrophic circumstances that are personal. This belief system alteration works both ways. I know die-hard, open-minded progressives who became ardent fundamentalists due to a traumatic event in their lives.

A really good example of this is the comedian Dennis Miller. I’ve seen Miller in concert four different times during the 1990s. His humor was complex, riddled with references, and leaned pretty left on almost all issues. Then 9/11 happened. For whatever reasons, the trauma of 9/11 caused a seismic shift in Miller’s belief system. Now he is a mainstay on conservative talk radio. His humor was replaced with anger and frustration. 9/11 changed his belief system because it was a catastrophic event that was personal to him.

The catastrophe of the Great Depression along with the progressive remedies by FDR helped create a generation of Democrats from previously die-hard Republicans. People who had, up until that point, deeply believed the government couldn’t help the economy only the free market could change their minds when the brutal reality of the Great Depression affected them directly, personally.

I thought the financial crisis in 2008 would have a similar, though lesser, impact on many Republicans. It didn’t. The systems that were put in place after the Great Recession to deal with economic crises, the quick, smart response by Congress and the administration helped make what could have been a catastrophic event into merely a really bad one. People suffered, but they didn’t suffer enough to where they were open to questioning their deeply held beliefs. Because this questioning didn’t take place, the Great Recession didn’t lead to any meaningful political shift away from poorly regulated markets, supply side economics, or how to respond to a financial crisis. This is why, even though rural Christian white Americans were hit hard by the Great Recession, they not only didn’t blame the political party they’ve aligned themselves with for years, they rewarded them two years later by voting them into a record number of state legislatures and taking over the U.S. House.

Of course, it didn’t help matters there were scapegoats available they could direct their fears, anger, and white supremacy towards. A significant number of rural Americans believe President Obama was in charge when the financial crisis started. An even higher number believe the mortgage crisis was the result of the government forcing banks to give loans to unqualified minorities. It doesn’t matter how untrue both of these are, they are gospel in rural America. Why reevaluate your beliefs and voting patterns when scapegoats are available?

How do you make climate change personal to someone who believes only God can alter the weather? How do you make racial equality personal to someone who believes whites are naturally superior to non-whites? How do you make gender equality personal to someone who believes women are supposed to be subservient to men by God’s command? How do you get someone to view minorities as not threatening personal to people who don’t live around and never interact with them? How do you make personal the fact massive tax cuts and cutting back government hurts their economic situation when they’ve voted for these for decades? I don’t think you can without some catastrophic events. And maybe not even then. The Civil War was pretty damn catastrophic yet a large swath of the South believed and still believes they were right, had the moral high ground. They were/are also mostly Christian fundamentalists who believe they are superior because of the color of their skin and the religion they profess to follow. There is a pattern here for anyone willing to connect the dots.

“Rural, white America needs to be better understood,” is not one of the dots. “Rural, white America needs to be better understood,” is a dodge, meant to avoid the real problems because talking about the real problems is viewed as “too upsetting,” “too mean,” “too arrogant,” “too elite,” “too snobbish.” Pointing out Aunt Bee’s views of Mexicans, blacks, gays…is bigoted isn’t the thing one does in polite society. Too bad more people don’t think the same about the views Aunt Bee has. It’s the classic, “You’re a racist for calling me a racist,” ploy. Or, as it is more commonly known, “I know you are but what am I?”

I do think rational arguments are needed, even if they go mostly ignored and ridiculed. I believe in treating people with the respect they’ve earned but the key point here is “earned.” I’ll gladly sit down with Aunt Bee and have a nice, polite conversation about her beliefs about “the gays,” “the blacks,” “illegals,”…and do so without calling her a bigot or a racist. But, this doesn’t mean she isn’t a bigot and a racist and if I’m asked to describe her beliefs these are the only words that honestly fit. No one with cancer wants to be told they have cancer, but just because no one uses the word, “cancer,” it doesn’t mean they don’t have it. Just because the media, pundits on all sides, some Democratic leaders don’t want to call the actions of many rural, Christian, white Americans, “racist/bigoted” doesn’t make them not so.

Avoiding the obvious only prolongs getting the necessary treatment. America has always had a race problem. It was built on racism and bigotry. This didn’t miraculously go away in 1964 with the passage of the Civil Rights Act. It didn’t go away with the election of Barack Obama. If anything, these events pulled back the curtain exposing the dark, racist underbelly of America that white America likes to pretend doesn’t exist because we are the reason it exists. From the white nationalists to the white, suburban soccer moms who voted for Donald Trump, to the far left progressives who didn’t vote at all, racism exists and has once again been legitimized and normalized by white America.

The honest truths that rural, Christian, white Americans don’t want to accept and until they do nothing is going to change, are:

  • -Their economic situation is largely the result of voting for supply-side economic policies that have been the largest redistribution of wealth from the bottom/middle to the top in U.S. history.
  • -Immigrants haven’t taken their jobs. If all immigrants, legal or otherwise, were removed from the U.S., our economy would come to a screeching halt and prices on food would soar.
  • -Immigrants are not responsible for companies moving their plants overseas. Almost exclusively white business owners are the ones responsible because they care more about their share holders who are also mostly white than they do American workers.
  • -No one is coming for their guns. All that has been proposed during the entire Obama administration is having better background checks.
  • -Gay people getting married is not a threat to their freedom to believe in whatever white God you want to. No one is going to make their church marry gays, make gays your pastor, accept gays for membership.
  • -Women having access to birth control doesn’t affect their life either, especially women who they complain about being teenage, single mothers.
  • -Blacks are not “lazy moochers living off their hard earned tax dollars” anymore than many of your fellow rural neighbors. People in need are people in need. People who can’t find jobs because of their circumstances, a changing economy, outsourcing overseas, etc. belong to all races.
  • -They get a tremendous amount of help from the government they complain does nothing for them. From the roads and utility grids they use to the farm subsidies, crop insurance, commodities protections…they benefit greatly from government assistance. The Farm Bill is one of the largest financial expenditures by the U.S. government. Without government assistance, their lives would be considerably worse.
  • -They get the largest share of Food Stamps, Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security.
  • -They complain about globalization but line up like everyone else to get the latest Apple product. They have no problem buying foreign-made guns, scopes, and hunting equipment. They don’t think twice about driving trucks whose engine was made in Canada, tires made in Japan, radio made in Korea, computer parts made in Malaysia.
  • -They use illicit drugs as much as any other group. But, when other people do it is a “moral failing” and they should be severely punished, legally. When they do it, it is a “health crisis” that needs sympathy and attention.
  • -When jobs dry up for whatever reasons, they refuse to relocate but lecture the poor in places like Flint for staying in towns that are failing.
  • -They are quick to judge minorities for being “welfare moochers” but don’t think twice about cashing their welfare check every month.
  • -They complain about coastal liberals, but the taxes from California and New York are what covers their farm subsidies, helps maintain their highways, and keeps their hospitals in their sparsely populated areas open for business.
  • -They complain about “the little man being run out of business” then turn around and shop at big box stores.
  • -They make sure outsiders are not welcome, deny businesses permits to build, then complain about businesses, plants opening up in less rural areas.
  • -Government has not done enough to help them in many cases but their local and state governments are almost completely Republican and so too are their representatives and senators. Instead of holding them accountable, they vote them in over and over and over again.
  • -All the economic policies and ideas that could help rural America belong to the Democratic Party: raising the minimum wage, strengthening unions, infrastructure spending, reusable energy growth, slowing down the damage done by climate change, healthcare reform…all of these and more would really help a lot of rural Americans.

What I understand is that rural, Christian, white Americans are entrenched in fundamentalist belief systems; don’t trust people outside their tribe; have been force-fed a diet of misinformation and lies for decades; are unwilling to understand their own situations; and truly believe whites are superior to all races. No amount of understanding is going to change these things or what they believe. No amount of niceties will get them to be introspective. No economic policy put forth by someone outside their tribe is going to be listened to no matter how beneficial it would be for them. I understand rural, Christian, white America all too well. I understand their fears are based on myths and lies. I understand they feel left behind by a world they don’t understand and don’t really care to. They are willing to vote against their own interest if they can be convinced it will make sure minorities are harmed more. Their Christian beliefs and morals are truly only extended to fellow white Christians. They are the problem with progress and always will be, because their belief systems are constructed against it.

The problem isn’t a lack of understanding by coastal elites. The problem is a lack of understanding of why rural, Christian, white America believes, votes, behaves the ways it does by rural, Christian, white America.

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